This variety features tall, striking, thistle-like plants with serrated leaves and large spiny flower heads. It is a valuable source of nectar for bees and butterflies, as well as attracting many seed-eating birds to your garden or wild flower meadow. It also makes attractive, dried, cut flowers.
Sow from February to June onto the surface of a good, free-draining, damp, seed compost. Cover with a very fine sprinkling of compost or vermiculite. Place sown container in a propagator or seal container inside a polythene bag at a temperature of 15-20C until after germination which usually takes 1-3 months. Do not exclude light as this helps germination. Transplant seedlings when large enough to handle into trays or 7.5cm pots. Gradually acclimatise young plants to cooler conditions for a few weeks before planting out after all risk of frost, 30-45cm apart.