Pollinator attractor: the Brazilian Bachelor’s Button flower

Industriously going from flower to flower…

We got the Brazilian Bachelor’s Button (Centratherum intermedium) plant as a pass-along cutting from a family friend. The single cutting has since grown and literally spread out as a low-lying bush that is slowly encircling our big Birds’ Nest fern.

The pale purple flowers are really pretty. I’ve mentioned that they remind me of Carnival in Brazil, because of their stringy, pouffy appearance. Well, all that fluffiness is actually made up of lots of tiny flowers – yes, from the outer light purple ring all the way to the whitish middle. I can’t hazard a guess how many little flowers are in each Brazilian Bachelor’s Button flower head…

…but all those pollen-laden flowers are definitely a magnet for pollen-seeking creatures.

Busily gathering pollen…

If you go to the plant in the late afternoon, you will find lots of activity.

I haven’t staked out the plant in the morning, so I can’t vouch for that time of day, but it’s possible it’s busy then, too.

What you will see is a small swarm of bees busily flitting from flower to flower, landing for a short while, walking around a little, and then drifting off to the next flower target. I hadn’t realized just what a good pollinator-attracting plant this was until recently. I think that when I prune the plant, I’m going to use the cuttings to propagate more plants closer to my edible garden. Isn’t that what companion planting is supposed to be about? :)

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