Cosmos bipinnatus

Family: Asteraceae

Common name: MEXICAN ASTER

Native to: Mexico, Southern United States

Sentiment: joy in love and life

Plant

Type: annual

Forms: erect, open form

Max height: 6.6 feet

Max width: 1.5 feet

Flower

pink

Leaf

green

Horticulture

Attracts wildlife: adult butterfly, bird, specific butterfly species

Plant part consumed by birds: seeds

Exposure: sun

Landscape use: container

Propagates by: seed

flowers in summer

Soil types: loam, well drained

USDA Zones: zone 7 to 0 f, zone 8 to +10 f, zone 9 to +20 f, zone 10 to +30 f, zone 11 to +40 f

Temp. range: 0 to above +40 °F

Water: moderate

  • Cosmos bipinnatus 2
  • Cosmos bipinnatus 4
  • Cosmos bipinnatus seashells
  • Cosmos bipinnatus
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Cosmos, a Compositae comprised of 46 species, is widely available and grow in Zones 7-11. Most need moderate watering. Many are around 1½ feet tall and come in a variety of colors including the dark red Cosmos atrosanguineus.

Cosmos bipinnatus, a pink-flowering annual, grows to 6 ½ feet tall by 1 ½ feet wide and can be grown from seed. It grows in Zones 7-11, needs moderate watering and prefers full sun. It can be grown in a large container. It is native to the southern United States.

In addition to the butterflies that come to plants in the Compositae family to feed, Cosmos bipinnatus attracts Vanessa cardui, PAINTED LADY and Pieris napi, GREEN-VEINED WHITE.

Vanessa cardui
Plants for container - flowering annuals

This annual plant is suitable for container gardening. Container plants generally have a smaller root-ball and most thrive with regular watering. Most will perk up if watered when they have drooped a bit.

There are over 300 plants in this category that can be further sorted for shady spots or as attractive to wildlife. Most of these annuals an be grown from seed and prefer being grown in a sunny locale. Nearly 200 entries in this category are plants that appeal to adult butterflies, 75 plants attract bees, and 47 plants attract hummingbirds.

Annual plants suitable for containers can be found in every color imaginable – yellow flowers and white flowers are the most common, but they can also be found in orange, purple, violet, red, pink, and blue. Several of these plants are grown for their cut flowers, some have fragrant flowers, three produce dried flowers, and a few are useful arbor plants. Most of them flower in summer, but annual plants suitable for growing in containers can be found that flower in every season.

Some of these container plants can be grown as perennials in Zone 8, Zone 9, and Zone 10. A small number can be grown as perennials in colder Zones (Zone 3, Zone 4, Zone 5, Zone 6, and Zone 7).

Some of these can be grown as container vegetable garden plants. Please see the "edible annuals for containers" category to see 177 vegetable plants suitable for growing in containers.