Chocolate Cosmos – One of the Rarest Flowers

There are many chocolate colored flowers available, but Chocolate Cosmos gets a special boost.  I give it this rating because, not only does it have a lovely dark chocolate fragrance, but it is also one of the top 10 rarest flowers in the world. The plant is a perennial and is easy to grow and a stunner in the garden.Chocolate is not just for snacking. This lovely plant is called Chocolate Cosmos. It has a reddish chocolate color and light vanilla fragrance that gets stronger as the day goes one. See how to grow it on The Gardening Cook

Imaging walking through your garden and getting a whiff of dark chocolate with a hint of vanilla wafting from a pretty chocolate colored flower.  You have just happened upon a chocolate cosmos!

Chocolate Cosmos has a lovely Chocolate color and Dark Chocolate Fragrance.

This variety of cosmos is a native to Mexico, but has been extinct in the wild for over 100 years.

Chocolate Cosmos - one of the 10 rarest flowers in the world.

Photo credit: Ali Express

Chocolate cosmos (Cosmos atrosanguineus)  is a perennial plant with a fleshy tuberous root. The flowers are red to maroon brown with a center raised area.  The plant has a dark chocolate fragrance that becomes more noticeable as the day wears on.

The center of the flower forms in a cluster like appearance and opens into the traditional cosmos shape with velvety petals. Once the flower has died, the plant will benefit from deadheading, which will encourage additional blooms.Chocolate cosmos flower buds

Once open, the flower has a cupped appearance but keeps the stunning cluster center that makes it so interesting. The color can vary from reddish brown to deep chocolate.

If  you can find a plant, it is fairly easy to grow, as are all Cosmos.    Chocolate Cosmos can get by on rather dry soil, as long as it is amended. Avoid waterlogged conditions, or the tubers will rot.

Chocolate cosmos makes wonderful cut flowers and does a great job at attracting butterflies to your garden.   The Clumps get larger with each passing year.  The plant likes lots of sun and a well draining soil. It is hardy to about 20 degrees but can be dug up and stored for the winter the way you do with dahlias

Raised beds and organic mulch help to maintain even moisture.  Propagation is by division of the tubers.  This is best done in early spring or fall.

Chocolate cosmos should be grown in a border or in containers where the flowers and fragrance can be appreciated up close. They make very good cut flowers.

Chocolate Cosmos - one of the 10 rarest flowers in the world

This plant comes with both good and bad news.  The good news is that it is a perennial, so once you find one you don’t have to replace it every year (as long as you dig it up and save it). The bad news is that it doesn’t throw fertile seeds, so this plant only propagates by its roots.

I grew cosmos for the first time a few summers ago.  It is prolific when it comes to bearing flowers and a delight in my garden.

Chocolate Cosmos (Cosmos atrosanguineus), as a plant, can be found in limited amounts for sale at Burpee, New Garden Plants, and Joy Creek Nursery. I have seen seeds for sale on Amazon, but cannot vouch for them, since the plant throws infertile seeds. Another plant which is available as seeds is Osiria rose , which are sold on Amazon, and likely will not grow.

Have you had any luck growing Chocolate Cosmos?

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are "affiliate links." This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive a small commission from the sale, but the price is the same for you. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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  20 comments for “Chocolate Cosmos – One of the Rarest Flowers

  1. LJ
    04/25/2017 at 7:03 pm

    What good would it do to buy the seeds if they are not fertile?. Thanks!

    • Anna Czajkowska
      05/31/2020 at 12:35 am

      I bought tuber online, IT was 2 months on the soul. No luck.

  2. 04/27/2017 at 10:55 pm

    Oh my! It’s my first time to hear about Chocolate Cosmos Flower.
    It looks stunning in the picture and does it really smell dark chocolate with a hint of vanilla??
    Then,we’ve got to have this flower in the garden.

    • Carol
      04/27/2017 at 11:00 pm

      Hi Rachel. Yes, but unfortunately it is very hard to find. Carol

      • Emily Kosik
        07/09/2020 at 12:10 pm

        I found them at Costco!! And they are gorgeous. All five of the tubers have grown and are blooming now

        • Carol Speake
          07/11/2020 at 9:35 am

          Thanks for the tip Emily.

  3. Deborah Cox
    07/18/2017 at 7:06 am

    I bought my seeds from Ebay, to be fair I didn’t hold out much hope! However, what a shock I got when I planted them in a Belfast sink buried in the ground at the bottom of my garden! Planted the seeds in Miracle Grow Compost & the plants are huge!!! Two plants have shot up with an abundance of leaves about 2ft tall!!! Alas, no flowers or fragrance yet, but I am ever hopeful!

    • Carol
      07/18/2017 at 12:00 pm

      Hi Deboroh. I’ll be interested to see if they bear chocolate flowers. The seeds MIGHT be just normal cosmos which does grow easily. Keep in touch if they give the chocolate flowers please. Would love to see a photo to add to the article (with a shout out to you, of course.) Carol

        07/19/2017 at 8:19 am

        Hi Carol,

        You and me both!!! πŸ™‚

        I bought them as choca-mocca ones, so we shall see! The green tubers and leaves are huge, about 2ft tall and I was starting to think I had bought carrot seeds πŸ™‚ We affectionately call them Magsy’s Carrots at home, as they are planted in the sink/planter that is a memorial to my mom (Magsy).

        I will keep you posted if they do flower, as I’ll be most excited!


        • Carol
          07/19/2017 at 9:44 am


  4. Deborah Cox
    08/02/2017 at 8:03 am

    Just an update on the Cosmos situation. We now have buds on the tall green leafy stems. Not sure what colour they will be when they come out yet, but there are quite a few and the stems are starting to turn brown from the bottom up – hopefully this doesn’t mean they are dying!

    Will update again when the buds burst into flower.


    • Shannon
      02/21/2018 at 5:24 pm

      Deborah, Any update on your cosmos blooms? I found a website explaining that someone found or created a mutated chocolate cosmos which bore a few fertile seeds, and semi-fertile cosmos have been born from this plant. BUT that website was also selling chocolate cosmos seeds, so it could have all been crock… Looking forward to hearing back from you.
      Happy gardening,

      • Carol
        02/21/2018 at 5:32 pm

        :Hi Shannon. Deborah may not see this unless she visits this page again, but I haven’t heard back from her about her blooms. I’ll add photos if she does update me. I haven’t heard of anyone who has managed to get them to grow from seed. Carol

  5. Jaki r
    09/04/2018 at 2:35 pm

    I bought a chocolate cosmos this year, I think it’s called moccachokka! It the plant that just keeps giving, I am delighted, my favourite plant this year, so many blooms, in a small container, I deadhead everyday, marvellous

    • Carol
      09/05/2018 at 1:33 pm

      Hi Jaki. The color of the plant is amazing isn’t it? Carol

  6. Neil Butterworth
    10/22/2018 at 9:57 am

    Thanks for your interesting notes on the single dahlia cultivar “Chocolate Cosmos”. We picked one up in the reduced section of a local hardware store and it’s just come into flower (Late October). We’ll try to look after it. It’s currently in a large raised bed at our local community centre here in York, in the north of England. (Foxwood Residents’ Association)

    • Carol
      10/22/2018 at 10:18 am

      Hi Ned. I’d love to see a photo of it! Carol

  7. Sandy
    07/27/2019 at 12:47 am

    I just purchase from Etsy from hopehappyshop, Rare Chocolate Cosmos Flower Seeds, Professional Pack, with claims of Beautiful Coreopsis New Variety 20 seeds rich scent like chocolate, waiting on delivery… I hope and pray these seeds are fertile… I’m retired military and have had luck with keeping grown plants alive so I am attempting my green thumb care with seeds now…

    • Carol
      07/27/2019 at 10:04 am

      Let us know if they grow for you!

  8. Tracy Robertson
    09/30/2019 at 1:13 am

    Mine are huge and covered in flowers. Just planted in June. I love them.

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