June 11, 2017
One of my favorite plants for easy-care consistent color is celosia. Celosia plants produce a plethora of brightly colored plumes of feathery flowers. They are easy to grow, and their color holds up great even in the hottest and driest of Mississippi summer conditions. Bright, vibrant red flowers are popular, but are far from being the only choice. For example, the Castle Series mix will grow up to 16 inches tall, and produces a wide range of colors, from orange to yellow to pink and red. When planted in mass, the Castle Series Mix reminds me of a colorful family of gnomes. Even though the mixed varieties provide a carnival of color, I think the red varieties are stunning. Dragons Breath celosia has unique red-green foliage that is topped with blazing red feathery flowers that resemble flames licking upwards. If you want even more red, try New Look Celosia. This variety gives a double dose of red, with bright red 4-inch flower plumes, accentuated by deep burgundy foliage. But if that’s too much red, then try Fresh Look Celosia. This variety offers the same amazing red flower plumes, but they stand above bright chartreuse foliage that can brighten any garden setting. Celosia plants are annuals, but that comes with a twist. They do an excellent job of reseeding for you, and usually return year after year. Combine that with long-lasting, drought resistant color that doesn’t fade in the late summer, and you have a plant that any gardener should love. I’m horticulturist Gary Bachman, and I’ll see you next time on Southern Gardening.