Other Names: Aciano, Audifoin, Bluebottle, Boutonniere Flower, Barbeau, Bleuet, Bleuet des Champs, Bluebonnet, , Blue-Blow, Blue Cap, Blue Centaury, Casse-Lunettes, Corn Flower, Cyani Blossoms, Cyani Flos, Cyani Flowers, Cyani Petals, Flor Celeste & Hurtsickle.
Description: Cornflower petals come from an annual plant native to Europe which grows to a height of 40-90cm. The leaves are alternate, linear-lanceolate in shape with thinly toothed entire margins, 1-4cm in length and greyish-green to lime green in colour. The solitary flowers are 2.5-3.5cm in diameter with a central disc surrounded by ray-florets which are deep blue to violet blue in colour.
Brief History: In his 16th century herbal John Gerard called this herb Blew-Bottle and Corne-Floure, Gerard wrote that ‘the faculties of these floures are not sufficiently known’ however he did note that other herbalists were finding them to be ‘good against the inflammation of the eyes’. By the 17th century Nicholas Culpeper referred to the cornflower by its then common name of Blue-Bottle, he wrote ‘The seed or leaves taken in wine, is very good against the plague, and all infectious diseases, and is very good in pestilential fevers. The juice dropped into the eyes takes away the heat and inflammation of them. The distilled water of this herb, hath the same properties, and may be used for the effects aforesaid.’
Cornflowers petals can be added to pot pourri to add a bright splash of bright colour and to decorative papers, to pressed flower decorations and to decorate soaps and cosmetics; a decoction of the flowers can be added to lotions and creams for the skin where anti-inflammatory properties are required. Add to shampoos and hair rinses, decoctions of the petals can be used to soothe the eyes.
Shelf life of two years provided that goods are stored in an airtight container in ambient conditions.
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