The Dusty Miller

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Centaurea cineraria, the velvet centaurea, is – like some other plants – also known as "dusty miller" and "silver dust". It is a small plant in the family Asteraceae and originates from the Island of Capraia in Italy, where it is called fiordaliso delle scogliere. The mature plants will grow from 15 cm to 60 cm (6inches to 24 inches). They prefer full sun, but will tolerate light shade, and also prefers average to rich well-drained soil. Small daisy-like flowers produced singly or in few-flowered clusters top the branches in summer. Centaurea cineraria will produce small white or yellow flowers in summer, but these are usually trimmed because the plant is normally grown as foliage. Depending on climate, it can be grown as either an annual or as a perennial. The silver color of the leaf is from the dense mat of small thick hairs which cover the upper and lower surfaces.
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