Skip to main content
A picture of a Love-in-a-Mist


Nigella papillosa

Photo by dogwooddays (All rights reserved)

Partial Shade
Moderate watering


RHS hardiness


Minimum temperature

Expected size








1 years to reach maturity


  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

Love-in-a-Mist Overview

Nigella papillosa is a bushy annual species from the Ranunculaceae family. Commonly known as Love-in-a-Mist, from the delicate foliage that surrounds the blooms, this name is shared with other plants. It originates from Portugal and Spain, where it is naturally found on neglected patches of land. Often grown as a wildflower, it is low maintenance and readily self-seeds. Great for meadow or cottage style gardens. Deadhead regularly to encourage repeat-flowering, the blooms and airy foliage also make nice cut flowers. Nigella papillosa produces ferny foliage, spiky flowers surrounded by airy, structural modified leaves known as bracts and bulbous ornamental seed-heads. It typically grows to around 70cm tall, producing white blooms with contrasting dark red-purple centres. Flowers lead onto inflated, ornamental seedpods. The dried seedpods may be used in floral arrangements. Seed may be sown in autumn or from late winter-spring and it usually takes around 3 months from seed to flower. This plant does best in lower quality, well-draining soil and full sun, but will grow easily in most soils. Water regularly. Germination takes around 3 weeks and flowering tends to occur from spring-summer.

How to propagate Love-in-a-Mist


Sow in spring to summer, in situ or in trays, flowering should be around 12 weeks from seed.

Special features of Love-in-a-Mist

Attractive flowers

Attracts bees

Attracts useful insects