The genus Celosia includes annuals, perennials, and shrubs in 50 or 60 species from dry, stony areas of Asia, Africa, and the Americas. The flowers are tiny but arranged into showy, brightly colored (some say gaudy) inflorescences. Celosia cultivars may have plume-like, feathery flowerheads or tightly grouped, flat flowerheads, resembling a rooster’s comb. Grow as annuals in beds or containers, or in the cutting garden.
Noteworthy CharacteristicsColorful, soft flowers. Good for cutting and drying.
CarePlant out after the frost-free date in a sheltered site with moist but well-drained soil in full sun. Water freely during dry weather. In the greenhouse, grow in full light with good ventilation.
PropagationFrom early to late spring, sow seed at 64°F and transplant seedlings as soon as possible.
ProblemsFoot rot, root rot, fungal leaf spot. In the greenhouse, watch for spider mites, whiteflies, and aphids.