Other Name(s):

Aciano, Audifoin, Bachelor's Buttons, Barbeau, Bleuet, Bleuet des Champs, Bluebonnet, Bluebottle, Bluebow, Blue Cap, Blue Centaury, Casse-Lunettes, Centaurea cyanus, Centaurea segetum, Centaurée Bleue, Centaurée Bleuet, Corn Flower, Cyani Blossoms, Cyani Flos, Cyani Flowers, Cyani Petals, Flor Celeste, Hurtsickle.


Cornflower is an herb. The dried flowers are used to make medicine.

People take cornflower tea to treat fever, constipation, water retention, and chest congestion. They also take it as a tonic, bitter, and liver and gallbladder stimulant. Women take it for menstrual disorders and vaginal yeast infections.

Some people apply cornflower directly to the eye for irritation or discomfort.

In foods, cornflower is used in herbal teas to provide color.

How does it work?

There isn't enough information available to know how cornflower might work.

Uses & Effectiveness

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Fever.
  • Menstrual disorders.
  • Yeast infections.
  • Constipation.
  • Chest congestion.
  • Liver and gallbladder disorders.
  • Eye irritation, when applied directly.
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of cornflower for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).


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Side Effects

Cornflower is LIKELY SAFE when used to color herbal teas. There isn't enough information to know if cornflower is safe for use as a medicine.

Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking cornflower if you are pregnant or breast feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Allergy to ragweed, daisies, and related plants: Cornflower may cause an allergic reaction in people who are sensitive to the Asteraceae/Compositae plant family. Members of this family include ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, daisies, and many others. If you have allergies, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before using cornflower.


The appropriate dose of cornflower depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for cornflower. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.


Bablumian, IuA. [Antirelapse action of the flowers of the blue cornflower in urolithiasis]. Zh.Eksp.Klin.Med. 1978;18(6):110-114. View abstract.

Garbacki, N., Gloaguen, V., Damas, J., Bodart, P., Tits, M., and Angenot, L. Anti-inflammatory and immunological effects of Centaurea cyanus flower-heads. J Ethnopharmacol 12-15-1999;68(1-3):235-241. View abstract.

Sarker, S. D., Laird, A., Nahar, L., Kumarasamy, Y., and Jaspars, M. Indole alkaloids from the seeds of Centaurea cyanus (Asteraceae). Phytochemistry 2001;57(8):1273-1276. View abstract.

Shiono, M., Matsugaki, N., and Takeda, K. Phytochemistry: structure of the blue cornflower pigment. Nature 8-11-2005;436(7052):791. View abstract.

Takeda, K., Osakabe, A., Saito, S., Furuyama, D., Tomita, A., Kojima, Y., Yamadera, M., and Sakuta, M. Components of protocyanin, a blue pigment from the blue flowers of Centaurea cyanus. Phytochemistry 2005;66(13):1607-1613. View abstract.

Medicinal Plants. Springer Verlag: Lavoisier, NY, 1995.

Sifton D, ed. The PDR family guide to natural medicines & healing therapies. New York, NY:Three Rivers Press, 1999.

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