Nigella, Love-in-a-Mist

©2006 Publications International, Ltd. Nigella, or love-in-a-mist, is an See more pictures of annual flowers.

Nigella, love-in-a-mist, is an annual flower with threadlike foliage above each flower. Easily grown blossoms in soft colors have a delicate look.

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Description: Plants range in size from about 15 to 30 inches in height. Single or double flowers an inch or two wide may be blue, pink, purple, or greenish-white. They are followed by two-inch balloonlike seedpods with purple stripes.

How to grow: Grow in rich, well-drained soil in full sun, using seed or transplants. Clear a sizable space for plants so they can become established and return every year.

Propagation: Sow seeds outdoors a week or two before the last expected frost or indoors about six weeks before frost ends. Seeds germinate in a week at 72 degrees Fahrenheit.

Uses: The flowers are good for bedding and cutting. Seedpods, fresh or dry, are used in flower arrangements. In the garden, plants are often allowed to self-sow.

Related species: Nigella sativa, or fennel flower, has blue flowers and black seeds used for seasoning.

Related varieties: Persian Jewels is a classic type with flowers in mixed colors and big pods. Oxford Blue and Miss Jekyll are strong growers with blue flowers.

Scientific name: Nigella damascena

Want more information? Try these:

  • Annual Flowers. Discover your favorite annual flowers. We've organized them by color, sunlight, soil type, and height to make it easy to plan your garden.
  • Annuals. There's more to an annuals garden than flowers. Learn about all of the annuals that enhance your garden.
  • Perennial Flowers. Complement your annuals with these delightful perennial flowers. They are also organized by height, soil type, sunlight, and color.