In Bloom Today: Celosia

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

I planted two, new-to-me kinds of celosia in the garden this year. This first one (in the photo above) is called Pink Candle. Their color isn't quite the deep shade of pink that was shown on the seed packet, but I've learned not to rely too heavily on those photos; they tend to provide only a ballpark representation of the real thing (as in, this flower is *somewhere* along the spectrum of pink and, where it lands, you will soon find out!). A deep pink probably sells better than a pale one; that's my guess. Or maybe mine just didn't get enough nutrients. Anyway, I am not crazy about pale pink flowers, but I do think the shape and texture of these are interesting. Like other celosias, they are dry to the touch -- like straw -- and they last for a long time, making them ideal for dried flower arrangements.

The second celosia is more up my alley when it comes to color. I love bold colors in the garden and these fit the bill perfectly. This type of celosia is called New Look and it is just starting to open now -- giving a "new look" to the otherwise ratty-looking area of the back part of my garden plot, where I'm having a bit of a problem with a bindweed invasion. (More about that another day).

The New Look celosia is a compact plant (no more than a 12 - 18 inches tall) and it was very easy to grow from seed. They even survived the drought with little extra help on my part.

I love the contrast of the red, feathery plumes against the green, red-veined leaves. I learned here that "celosia is derived from the Greek word 'kelos,' meaning burn, which describes the flamelike colors and inflorescence of some cultivars." Seems a perfectly fitting description for this one, doesn't it?


Blogger Carol Michel said...

I haven't grown celosia for several years, seems there are some new varieties I should check out!

9:34 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Ooh... gorgeous! Do the red veins show up so well all season long? Either way, I think I'm sold. :)

10:23 PM  
Blogger Christa said...

It's amazing how many varieties of celosia there are. I've seen ones that are pink, red, yellow, and even peach. Johnny's seeds has pictures of some of them here.

Blackswamp girl,

Yes, the red veins were like that from the start. In fact, that was how I knew the seedlings weren't weeds. They emerged from the ground with bright red stems. Very interesting - and fun - to grow!

10:51 PM  
Blogger David (Snappy) said...

They seem really nice plants.The colours are awesome.Nice wasp picture too..

5:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow! You have such a beautiful garden and what pictures! Wow!

12:17 AM  

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