How to Grow Cheiranthus Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Wallflower and Gillyflower

Cheiranthus is a hardy perennial, but is usually grown as an hardy annual or biannual by gardeners.

The Cheiranthus plant is also known as the Wallflower or Gillyflower.

Wallflowers by Garryknight.

Cheiranthus members can vary in height from 15 to 80 cm (6 to 32 inches) in height.

It has blossoms that cover all of its stalks, and flowers from the late spring to early autumn.

Cheiranthus cheiri
Cheiranthus cheiri photograph by Manuel M. Ramos.

The Cheiranthus plant genus is placed in the Erysimum genus by botanists nowadays, but the name is still in common use by gardeners.

Commonly Grown Cheiranthus Species Photographs and Plant Identification

Cheiranthus cheiri

Cheiranthus cheiri syn. Cheiranthus allionii syn. Erysimum cheiri.

Cheiranthus cheiri
Cheiranthus cheiri (Wallflower), picture by Biodiversity Heritage Library; CC.

Cheiranthus Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Wallflower, Gillyflower.
Life Cycle: Hardy perennial usually grown as a hardy annual or biennial by gardeners.
Height: 6 to 30 inches (15 to 75 cm).
Native: Asia, Europe, Mediterranean, North and Central America.

Growing Region: Annuals: Zones 5 to 10. Grown as a perennial in zones 8 to 10.
Flowers: Late spring to early autumn.
Flower Details: Yellow, orange, pink, blue, purple many other colours and much morphology. Sweet scented.
Foliage: Silvery, purple. Evergreen.

Sow Outdoors: 1/4 inch (6 mm). Early spring or early autumn, with the exception of biennials; these should be sown out from the middle of summer to early autumn. Spacing 6 to 18 inches (15 to 45 cm).
Sow Indoors: Use vermiculite. Water from below. Germination time: one to three weeks. Temperature 65 to 75°F (18 to 24°C). Nine or ten weeks in advance. Transplant annuals and perennials outdoors before the last frost; transplant biennials in the middle of summer.

Requirements: Full sunlight or light shade. Very good drainage. Ordinary soil. Soil pH 7. Pinch tips. Water during dry periods. Propagate: cutting in spring.
Family: Brassicaceae.
Miscellaneous: Sometimes included in the Erysimum plant genus.

How to Grow Cheiranthus

If planning to grow Cheiranthus plants outdoors, then the seeds should be sown either in early spring or early autumn.

If treating as a hardy biennial, then they should be planted from the end of summer. Sow at a depth of 7 mm (1/4 inch).

They should be grown in a part of the garden that is sunny or partially shaded

Garden Wallflowers like to grow in a neutral or slightly limy soil. It should have good drainage.

When growing Cheiranthus seedlings from seeds indoors, they should be prepared about ten weeks before you plant them outdoors. Do so in the early spring or the middle of summer for biennials.

Cheiranthus plants should be spaced at about 15 cm (6 inches; small) to 30 to 40 cm apart ((12 to 16 inches; others).

Caring for wallflowers / Cheiranthus in the Garden

Once established, pinching back the tips will encourage the Garden wallflower plant to become more bushy.

If you are growing the plant as an hardy annual, then plants can readily be removed once they have finished flowering.

If you require more Cheiranthus plants for your garden, then you can take cuttings from wallflowers in late spring.

I hope that you enjoyed this guide on how to grow Cheiranthus plants. You may also enjoy the following Gardener's HQ Brassicaceae growing guides: How to grow Gold dust, Heliophila, Ionopsidium, and Aethionema plants.