Surface sow and press in lightly; requires light to germinate.
Sow indoors 6-8 weeks before planting out after last frost. Apply a light sprinkling of vermiculite. Keep at 75°F during the day and 70°F at night.
Direct sow after frost.
PLACEMENT & CULTIVATION
Cleome, also known as spider flower, requires very little care, making it ideal for growing in masses. It blooms for an extended period, with new buds forming and opening from the center as old petals fall. A heat lover, it sails through summer, and its compact, uniform habit makes it a reliable choice for the front of the border or large containers. It is not only deer-resistant but also attracts a variety of pollinators, such as butterflies, hummingbirds, and hawk moths. It is an excellent cut flower; however, you should beware of the small thorns on the stems.
Water regularly until established, then during dry spells.
Prefers slightly acidic to neutral.
Mix in a couple of inches of compost prior to planting, and supplement with an organic time-release formulation.
Diseases & Pests:
If aphids appear, hose plants down several times a week or spray with an insecticidal soap. Prevent mildew and rust by setting in a location with good air circulation and proper spacing.
When to Cut for Bouquets:
Cut when florets are 1/2 open; beware of spines on stems. Short-lived.