New cultivars of lobelia represent all heavenly blues, they also include unusual types of flowers with white "eyes". In fact those are white or yellowish throats of the flowers but they definitely more observe than swallow. No matter the cultivar, the seeds are easily available at good garden centres and should be one of our early spring shopping priorities. The fine seeds do not require covering, all you need is to sprinkle them (in late February or early March) on top of finely prepared sowing compost. However, they require light and humidity, and patience. Seedlings are very delicate and after their first true leaf emerges, they must be transplanted into separate small containers filed with good garden mixture. Do not try to pick individual seedlings, even monks would not like to do the task, rather, take out a group of several little green creatures and place them together in a new place. They will soon develop nice compact plants which are going to be permanently transplanted into the garden in late spring when the danger of late spring frost spells is gone.
Lobelia thrives in full sun, likes sheltered sites (especially the trailing cultivars, which look great in hanging baskets), is grateful for occasional complex feeding (but do not overdo with nitrogen as it delays flowering) and regular watering. It is a great company for other gaudy annuals and perennials as its blue flowers vividly juxtapose with other colours of the rainbow, including the blue ones. And the blueless white and carmine lobelias might find their way among the colourful mixture too, pretending not to be lobelias at all. I am sorry.