As expected, many flowers are more expensive when they are out-of-season; though these same flowers can be practically dirt-cheap if you get them at the right time of year. Whenever purchasing flowers, whether it be for a garden, a wedding or for some other purpose, it is best to check their availability based on the specific region they are purchased in, as prices can range greatly from region to region. Fortunately, there are plenty of inexpensive blue flowers that are available at various times throughout the year.
African Violet (Saintpaulia ionantha)
Some varieties of the African Violet produce blue-violet flowers. It is an inexpensive plant that is often used as a house plant in the United States. When properly cared for, it is capable of blooming continuously throughout the year. The African Violet does require a decent amount of sunlight throughout the day and well-drained soil to thrive.
Ageratum (Ageratum houstonianum)
Ageratum flowers bloom during the summer, making it the least expensive during this time period. IT requires partial shade and sun, where it can reach heights of 24 inches. Ageratum flowers are ideal as cut flowers due to their height and according to the University of Massachusetts, the blue flower of this plant can be as large as three inches or more in diameter.
Aster (Aster oolentangiensis)
In Greek, “aster” translates directly into “a star,” which gives this plant it’s common name, aster. This perennial plant can produce sky blue flowers that are up to 1 1/3 an inch in diameter. The aster blooms from August into October, making it cheaper during that specific time frame.
Bachelor’s Button (Centaurea cyanus)
Bachelor’s Button begins blooming in late may, so it can be expected to be inexpensive during the late spring and into the early mid-summer season. Some cultivars, such as ‘Blue Boy,’ can produce plants that reach 3 feet in height. This height also makes Bachelor’s Button plants ideal as cut flowers.
Cornflowers (Centaurea montana)
It should be noted that although the cornflower can also be referred to as Bachelor’s Button, it is a different species as denoted by the scientific names. Cornflower plants produce deep blue flowers that are approximately 2 inches in diameter. They prefer well-drained soil combined with adequate levels of sun and partial shade. This plant is least expensive during the late spring in the Southern regions and in the early summer in more Northern regions.
Delphinium (Delphinium spp.)
This particular species of plant can reach heights of 8 feet when grown in well-drained soil accompanied by full sun. Depending on the exact species, delphiniums come in several shades of blue including light blues and deeper blues. The Belladonna Delphinium, which produces blue flowers, blooms in the mid or late summer months, when the flowers will be the least expensive to buy.
Glory-of-the-Snow (Chionodoxa luciliae)
Glory-of-the-Snow blooms in the early spring, making it the least expensive during this time frame in regions where it is available. It is a smaller plant, only reaching a height of approximately 6 inches. When it blooms, it produces bright blue flowers that are shaped like stars. Glory-of-the-Snow grows best in areas where it receives optimal sunshine.
Hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla)
Hydrangeas can be more expensive when they are not in season. However, during their blooming period, they are relatively cost-effective, especially for a wedding. This is because for floral arrangements, less of the hydrangea is needed. The hydrangea does best in morning sun and afternoon shade, where it will bloom in the mid to late summer.
Pincushion Flower (Scabiosa steliata)
The Pincushion Flower begins producing flowers within 12 weeks of planting. It is ideal as a cut flower thanks to it’s longer stem and according to the University of Massachusetts, because of the fact that it will last long as a cut flower. The Pincushion Flower can reach heights of 30 to 36 inches, depending on the specific cultivar. Some cultivars produce blue flowers, while others produce lavender-tinted blue flowers.
University of Rhode Island: Caring for African Violets
North Carolina State University: Ageratum
University of Wisconsin: Aster
University of Vermont: Centaurea montana
University of Vermont: Delphinium
Iowa State University: The Other Spring-Flowering Bulbs
Auburn University: Hydrangea
University of Massachusetts: Field Grown Annuals for Cut Flowers