Dictionary of Flowers: Myosotis Sylvatica
(Forget-Me-Not)

Myosotis Sylvatica (Forget-Me-Not). Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of Dawnzy58 and Flickr

Myosotis Sylvatica (Forget-Me-Not) is such a famous blue that it has a color named after it. Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of Dawnzy58 and Flickr

  • Myosotis Sylvatica
  • Common name: forget-me-not
  • Family:  Boraginaceae
  • Category: perennial in USDA zones 3 to 8
  • Height: 12" to 18"
  • Width: 9" to 12"
  • Part shade
  • Blooms:  mid spring to early summer
  • Growth habit: mounding. Used as a filler in container combinations
  • Maintenance: easy
  • Soil: average to rich, moist, well drained. Water regularly if grown in containers
  • Garden uses: containers, bedding plant, mixed border, woodland garden
  • Diseases: fungal diseases if stressed during summer
  • Pests: none

Short lived perennial native to Europe, it is well known for the clusters of bright baby blue small flowers with yellow centers.

Some varieties bloom pink or white. Leaves are fuzzy and small. The seed capsules are sticky and attach themselves to clothing and animals' fur.

They can become invasive if not deadheaded.

In Victorian's language of flowers, it represents faithfulness and enduring love.

Forget-me-not grows in partial shade locations, in moist, average to fertile soil. Amend the planting site with organic matter before setting the plants.

Water well until established. They suffer in dry, hot weather. In cooler climates, they can be planted in part sun situations, avoiding mid day sun.

A layer or compost will help keep the ground cool and moist and prevent self-seeding. They are best when planted in large groups, for color impact. 

In early spring, apply a slow-release fertilizer formula. When growing in containers, a liquid balanced fertilizer can be applied instead.  When they are finished blooming, shear back if self seeding is not desired. 

IWILLWRITECAPTION. Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of NAMEOFFLICKRUSER and Flickr




Forget-me-nots are easily available in nurseries during early to mid spring. They can be easily grown from seed. Outdoors, plant in spring to summer for bloom the next year.

Prepare the area by tilling and watering, and sow seed half inch deep. Keep the seedlings well watered. Thin to six inches apart. They can also be wintersown.

IWILLWRITECAPTION. Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of NAMEOFFLICKRUSER and Flickr

The plants can get stressed during hot dry summers. Keep them misted and well watered to avoid fungal disease.

If aphids become a problem, knock them down with a blast of water from the hose. They are deer resistant.

Popular varieties:

  • Myosotis Sylvatica 'Indigo Compacta' - Six to twelve inches, smaller than other myosotis. Good variety for growing in containers. Dark blue blooms
  • Myosotis Sylvatica 'Victoria Dwarf' series - Six to twelve inches tall. Blue, pink, white and lavender flowers
  • Myosotis Sylvatica 'Rosylva' - pink blooms on short plants, up to twelve inches tall

IWILLWRITECAPTION. Image used under a Creative Commons licence with the kind permission of NAMEOFFLICKRUSER and Flickr

Click to see Lysimachia Punctata (Loosestrife)
Click to see Nepeta Faassenii (Catmint)

Full List of Dictionary of Flowers Entries

Annuals For Containers

Perennials For Containers

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