Planting Chocolate Cosmos in Your Garden

Chocolate cosmos are a beautiful and fragrant addition to any garden. They’re also relatively easy to grow, making them a great choice for gardeners of all levels of experience. In this post, we’ll share some tips on how to plant and care for chocolate cosmos in your own garden.

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If you’re looking for a unique addition to your garden, chocolate cosmos (Cosmos atrosanguineus) is a perfect choice. This erect, clump-forming annual or tender perennial has rich, chocolate-scented blooms that appear from summer to fall. The plant’s dark green foliage makes an attractive backdrop for the 2-inch (5 cm.) flowers, which are beloved by bees and butterflies.

What is a Chocolate Cosmos?

Chocolate cosmos (Cosmos atrosanguineus) is a strikingly beautiful flower that is sure to add some pizazz to your garden. As its name suggests, it has a chocolate-scented fragrance that is absolutely intoxicating! This member of the aster family is native to Mexico and can reach up to 3 feet tall at maturity. Chocolate cosmos are annuals, which means they will only last one growing season. Plant them in the springtime so you can enjoy their beauty all summer long.

Why Plant a Chocolate Cosmos?

One of the many reasons to love chocolate cosmos (Cosmos atrosanguineus) is that this stunning flower smells like chocolate! As an added bonus, it’s a carefree annual that provides almost nonstop color in the garden from midsummer until frost. Read on to learn more about how to grow chocolate cosmos in your own garden.

Chocolate cosmos is a member of the Asteraceae family, which also includes sunflowers, daisies and zinnias. This Mexican native grows as a tender perennial in its homeland, but it’s typically grown as an annual everywhere else. Chocolate cosmos plants reach a mature height of 2 to 3 feet and feature deep maroon or nearly black flowers that bloom atop dark green foliage. The flower petals are somewhat crinkled, adding texture and interest to the blooms.

When to Plant a Chocolate Cosmos

Chocolate cosmos (Cosmos atrosanguineus) is a stunning, deep maroon flower with a chocolate fragrance. This annual grows in USDA plant hardiness zones 9 to 11, reaching 2 to 3 feet tall and wide. Chocolate cosmos blooms from mid-summer until the first frost in fall. You can grow chocolate cosmos from seed or transplants. If you start with transplants, wait until all danger of frost has passed to plant them in your garden.

How to Plant a Chocolate Cosmos

Chocolate cosmos (Cosmos atrosanguineus) is a beautiful, deep red flower that smells like chocolate! These delicate blooms make a great addition to any garden, and they’re relatively easy to care for. Here’s how to plant your own chocolate cosmos:

1. Choose a sunny spot in your garden with well-drained soil. Chocolate cosmos need full sun to thrive.

2. Amend the soil with organic matter like compost or manure to help the flowers grow.

3. Plant the seeds about 1/4 inch deep in the soil. Water them well.

4. Keep the soil moist until the seeds germinate, which can take up to two weeks. Once they sprout, thin out the weaker seedlings so that only the strongest plants remain.

5. When the plants are about 6 inches tall, pinch off the tips to encourage bushier growth.Continue to water and fertilize regularly throughout the growing season.

Enjoy your beautiful chocolate cosmos all summer long!

Tips for Growing a Chocolate Cosmos

The chocolate cosmos (Cosmos atrosanguineus) is an unusual and dramatic flower that adds a touch of the exotic to any garden. This Mexican native is actually quite easy to grow, as long as you give it plenty of sun and well-drained soil. Chocolate cosmos bloom in late summer and fall, adding color to the garden when many other flowers are past their prime.

If you’re looking for a unique and attention-grabbing plant, chocolate cosmos is a good choice. The deep maroon blooms are borne on slender stems above tidy mounds of foliage. The blooms have a pleasant vanilla fragrance that is most pronounced in the evening.

Chocolate cosmos is not often seen in gardens, which makes it all the more special. Here are some tips for growing this intriguing plant:

Site selection: Choose a sunny spot in your garden with well-drained soil. Chocolate cosmos will tolerate some shade, but it will not bloom as profusely in shady conditions.

Preparing the bed: Add compost to your planting bed before you add chocolate cosmos plants or seeds. This will help improve drainage and provide nutrients to your plants.

Planting: You can start chocolate cosmos plants indoors from seed or buy plants at a nursery or garden center. If you start with seeds, sow them on the surface of moistened seed-starting mix and place them in a warm location with bright light. Keep the mix moist but not soggy until seedlings appear, which should be in about two weeks. Once seedlings are big enough to handle, transplant them into individual pots filled with potting soil mix. When nighttime temperatures remain above 50 degrees Fahrenheit, you can plant your chocolate cosmos outdoors. Be sure to harden off yourseedlings (acclimate them slowly to outdoor conditions) before planting them in their permanent location in the garden bed.

Watering: Water your chocolate cosmos regularly during the growing season, letting the soil dry out somewhat between waterings. Once established, these plants are quite drought tolerant. Too much water can lead to fungal diseases such as powdery mildew or root rot, so be sure not to overdo it!

Fertilizing: Fertilize monthly with a balanced fertilizer during the growing season if you want your plants to produce an abundance of blooms. An organic fertilizer such as compost or manure tea can also be used. Cut back on fertilizing once blooming slows down in late summer or early fall; too much fertilizer can delay flowering or cause excessive vegetative growth that may make your plants more susceptible to winter damage.


Now that you know how to successfully grow and care for chocolate cosmos, it’s time to enjoy these unique flowers in your own garden. Be sure to give them plenty of room to spread out, as they can quickly take over a small garden bed. And don’t forget to deadhead spent blooms to encourage even more flowering. With a little effort, you can have a dramatic chocolate cosmos display that will last from summer right into fall.

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