Botanical name: Celosia argentea var. plumosa Family: Amaranthaceae (amaranth family)
The celosias or cockscombs are erect, branching plants with oval or lance-shaped, strongly veined leaves 2-6 in long and hundreds of tiny flowers packed in dense, brightly colored flowerheads which usually stand above the foliage. The Plumosa Group of cultivars (sometimes sold as Celosia 'Plumosa' or feathered amaranth) have feathery plumelike flowerheads, 4-10 in tall, that look a little like tiny Christmas trees. Differs from the stiff-looking crested cockscomb (Celosia argentea var. cristata) in that their flowers are arranged in loose plumes rather than tightly knit crests. They prefer full sun and medium moisture and mulching will greatly help the surrounding soil to retain moisture. They are low maintenance and are mostly pest free, but may sometimes be afflicted with stem and root rot and possibly spider mites. Celosias are grown from seed.
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