Forget-me-nots are known for their petite yet gorgeous blue flowers. When grown outdoors, their aggressiveness allows them to spread as they see fit throughout your garden. Luckily, you can control the plant’s behavior by containing them in pots for your indoor garden, or even outdoors. These beauties are easy to care for, even for beginners, so learning how to grow Forget-me-nots flowers inside is a breeze.
Quick Care Overview
- Forget-me-nots do well in the sun or partial shade. Give them a south or easterly-facing window for optimal light.
- Water when the top few inches are dry to the touch. They like constantly moist, but not soaked, soil.
- You can feed them once per month in the spring/summer with a diluted fertilizer.
- Pinch off dying blooms to make way for new flowers.
- Most varieties are perennials and will grow back each year. A handful are not though, so make sure to check before purchasing.
- They grow well from seeds, but will grow more quickly when using a starter plant or cutting.
The plants come in two main varieties, Myosotis Sylvatica, or true forget-me-nots, and Myosotis Scorpioides, or woodland forget-me-nots. Both are technically perennials, though the woodland plants are short-lived and often considered annuals or biennials when grown outdoors. The variety you’ll pick will largely come down to personal preference and availability as both are beautiful additions to any garden while also being easy to care for.
The care is mainly the same regardless of the type you choose. The true forget-me-nots are slightly larger and bloom in summer, while the smaller woodland plants bloom in spring. The flowers are commonly blue, though white, yellow, and pink shades are also available.
If growing from seeds, sow them directly into the ground or container about 8-10 before the last frost date. This can be adjusted if you live in a mild climate. It can also be largely ignored if you’re growing them exclusively indoors.
You can also use a seedling from a nursery or take a cutting from an existing plant. In both cases, do so towards the end of spring to avoid frost dangers if growing outdoors. If grown indoors, you can plant them whenever you see fit, however doing so in spring is still ideal if you want them to bloom that year.
Both seeds and seedlings can also be planted towards the end of summer into early fall. They won’t bloom the year they are planted but should do so the following year.
Well-draining soil with a decent nutrient content is best for forget-me-nots. You can make your own using two parts light potting soil and one part each of compost and coarse sand or perlite. The mix offers the drainage forget-me-nots needed to prevent soggy roots while providing the plant with enough food to thrive. Avoid mixes containing fertilizer since forget-me-nots aren’t big eaters.
As for the container, a lightweight plastic pot will retain the proper moisture content. Be sure there are a few drainage holes in the bottom to allow excess moisture to flow out. I tend to avoid clay pots for this plant as they tend to whisk away too much water. Forget-me-nots like a little dampness, so I tend to find plastic works better at keeping the soil ideally moist.
A 12-inch pot is good for a smaller garden, but look to increase the size to grow more Forget-me-nots together. This flower likes good air circulation, so avoid planting too many in the same container. A 12-inch pot is good for 1-3 flowers, while larger ones will accommodate more.
Forget-me-nots love sunlight, though they don’t like heat, so they are perfect indoor plants for hot climates. Place these plants in south-facing windows for full sunlight, but move them back a few feet to avoid most of the heat. If you don’t have an appropriate south-facing window, an east-facing window will still offer partial morning sunlight, giving the forget-me-nots what they need to survive.
To encourage even growth, rotate the pot weekly to ensure each side receives plenty of light. If the plant isn’t turned, one side will become lush with minimal growth on the other side. Imbalanced sunlight can also lead to plant leaning and weak growth which may require support to correct.
Damp soil is vital for a forget-me-not, though they don’t like it too soggy, so you need to maintain medium moisture for a happy plant. Water the soil deeply, allowing it to drain from the holes in the bottom of the pot. Then leave the plant alone until the top 3 inches of soil dries. When this occurs, water it again.
In the winter, the plant goes dormant, so you can reduce watering to once or twice a month. If the plant begins to wilt you can water a bit more frequently, but be careful not to overdo it.
As mentioned above, forget-me-nots aren’t heavy feeders, so they rarely require fertilizer unless the plant isn’t growing well or the leaves begin to yellow. If such issues occur, add a slow-release granular 10-10-10 fertilizer to the damp soil.
You can also try a 5-10-10 water-soluble fertilizer added to a gallon of water diluted to about half-strength. Forget-me-nots only require fertilizer once or twice a year and should only be added when actively growing in spring/summer.
Forget-me-nots are tolerant to both cold and heat, though they don’t like the extremes of either, so moderate temperatures are best. The plant also prefers drier conditions rather than high humidity due to its susceptibility to powdery mildew disease. It shouldn’t be an issue when grown indoors, but for outdoor plants, give it some shade and plenty of air circulation in the summer.
When grown outdoors, you can allow your forget-me-nots to go wild, only deadheading the flowers if you want to prevent them from expanding their territory. When the leaves and stems begin to die, remove them immediately to avoid wasting moisture and nutrients. The flowers can also be pinched off when they begin to wilt. Doing so makes room for new blooms while ensuring your plant always looks its best.
Indoors, you can also do the same. Your flowers will naturally be limited to their container, so you generally won’t need to prune that often.
Extra Care Tips
Forget-me-nots don’t require complicated care, though you need to keep an eye on them if you don’t want them to expand. They self-seed, so if you don’t deadhead the flowers, you may have new ones sprouting in the pot before you know it.
If you want to plant them indoors, you can start them from seeds, though a quicker method is to use a starter plant. If you know someone with forget-me-nots in their garden, dig up one of the plants and place it in a pot of fresh soil. You can also find them at a nursery or garden center.
How To Grow Forget-Me-Not Flowers
Forget-me-nots are versatile plants that look as good in a rock garden as in a wedding bouquet. They only grow about a foot tall and wide, taking up minimal space in your home garden. With the proper care, these plants will thrive, adding a delightful elegance to any indoor space.
What are the best growing outdoor growing conditions for forget-me-nots?
When growing forget-me-nots outdoors, they may need more care since they don’t enjoy extreme temperatures. True forget-me-nots are more sensitive to cold than the woodland varieties, so consider which option is best for your climate. For spring blooms, start the seeds indoors 8 to 10 weeks before the last frost. Sowing the seeds directly into the garden in the fall also allows for spring blooms. Place your forget-me-nots in an area with partial shade to protect them during the hot summer sun. Water them regularly to keep the soil from drying out. Mix compost into the soil to provide the plants with the nutrients they need.
Are pests or diseases a problem for forget-me-nots?
Pests generally aren’t interested in forget-me-nots, though the plants are susceptible to powdery mildew and rust. Watch for powdery coatings or pustules that release orange spores beneath the leaves. Both issues result from damp foliage, so avoid getting the leaves wet when watering.
What is the toxicity of forget-me-nots?
Though true forget-me-nots are non-toxic, some similar varieties are mildly toxic to mammals. When growing these indoors, keep them well out of the reach of children and pets.