Everything You Need to Know About Forget-Me-Nots

From watering tips to the best soil conditions, two gardening experts share their advice.

Forget Me Not Alaska State Flower
Photo: NNehring/Getty Images

For a cute, colorful flower that regrows every year, consider planting forget-me-nots in your garden. "Forget-me-not blossoms are dainty (with five petals and an open, flat face) and come in shades like vivid blue, pink, and white," says Kelly Wilkness, host of My Soulful Home on Smart. Healthy. Green. Living. "They add lovely color and delight to a garden." Along with adding color and visual interest, Wilkness says forget-me-not flowers have cultural significance, too. "Throughout history, there are many references to the forget-me-not plant, from the Ancient Greeks to Henry IV to the present day," she explains. "Kensington Palace in London has a memorial garden which includes 3,500 white forget-me-nots in honor of Princess Diana as this humble bloom was her favorite flower. "

Interested in learning more about how to plant, grow, and care for forget-me-nots? We asked Wilkness and Josh Sevick, President of The Grounds Guys, a Neighborly company to share their advice on everything you need to know about the gorgeous blooms.

Plant forget-me-nots in partial shade.

According to our experts, forget-me-nots grow best in partial shade and in hardiness zones five through nine. "In the wild, forget-me-nots thrive in shady woodlands and riverbanks," Wilkness explains. "For the home gardener, plant in a moist spot that receives partial shade to dappled light." Additionally, if you wish to start from seed, Sevick recommends planting forget-me-not seeds about three inches deep into the soil to give their roots and stems room to grow. "You can use a spade or hand shovel," he says.

Use potting soil when planting.

Another way to ensure that forget-me-not plants produce superior blooms is to plant them in the right type of soil. "Forget-me-nots do best in a light soil that can breathe, so potting soil and compost are beneficial with planting," Sevick explains. "They do not require much fertilization, but a starter fertilizer may help when planted."

Water forget-me-nots frequently during warmer months.

Forget-me-nots thrive in moist soil conditions, which is why our gardening experts suggest watering them at about three to four times a week in the spring and summer. "Plenty of water will ensure these bright faced beauties will bloom from spring through summer," Wilkness says. To guarantee the soil stays moist (not soggy), water the plants deeply whenever the top three inches of soil feels dry during the warm weather months but reduce watering to about once or twice a month when they're dormant in the winter.

Try growing forget-me-nots as a container plant.

Wilkness warns that one downside to growing forget-me-nots is that they often produce more plants than there is space, earning them a reputation for being a potentially invasive species. "To avoid an overly abundant patch, consider planting forget-me-nots in a container," she says. "Provide a shaded spot and plenty of water, and choose a plastic pot, as this material will retain water better than ceramic or clay."

Prune regularly.

Whether in the ground or in a pot, Wilkness says forget-me-not plants should be snipped regularly to promote more blooms and to maintain their rounded shape. "Be careful not to cut the branch when snipping, unless harvesting for cut flowers," she says. "For the perennial variety, cut back to the ground in late fall

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