Bursting Cornflowers

Cornflowers are just bursting. A pretty plant renowned for its a long association with cereal agriculture, apparently hated by farmers because its tough stems blunted their scythes. The pollen record suggests it was an introduction most probably from steppe habitats to Northern European countries from the ‘High Middle Ages’, perhaps enabled through the increased movements of goods during the Crusades. After a rapid and recent decline through the modern agricultural age, it is once again spreading this time from gardens rather than from sacks of wheat and rye. Like many of the Asteraceae, it is well designed to survive these comings and goings through the millennia.

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