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Herbaceous Perennial

Knautia arvensis
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

field scabious

K. arvensis is a clump-forming perennial with lax stems bearing simple or pinnately lobed leaves and lilac-blue flowerheads to 4cm across in summer and autumn

Other common names
bachelor's buttons
black soap
see moreblue buttons
blue caps
clodweed
Egyptian rose
gypsies' rose
gypsy rose
lady's cushion
purple buttons
scabridge
Synonyms
Scabiosa arvensis
Scabiosa montana Mill.

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Size
Ultimate height
1–1.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Well–drained
pH
Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green
Summer Blue Purple Green
Autumn Blue Purple Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

South–facing or North–facing or West–facing or East–facing

Exposure
Exposed or Sheltered
Hardiness
H7
Botanical details
Family
Caprifoliaceae
Native to the UK
Yes
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Clump forming
Genus

Knautia can be annuals or perennials, and may have simple or pinnately lobed leaves and scabious-like flower-heads

Name status

Correct

Plant range
Europe, Asia

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in a moderately fertile, well-drained, preferably alkaline soil in full sun. Attractive to bees

Propagation

Propagate by seed in pots in a cold frame in spring or propagate by basal cuttings in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Wildflower meadow
  • Low Maintenance
Pruning

Old flower stems can be cut down after flowering

Pests

May be attacked by aphids

Diseases

Generally disease free

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