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How to Grow Celosia Plants in your Garden

Gardener's HQ Guide to Growing Cockscomb

Celosia is a half hardy annual that reaches from 30 cm to 1.2 metres in height.

Celosia plants are also known as Cockscomb and flower from summer and on into the early autumn.

They have flowers of yellow or pink. It is best to grow cockscomb plants in large groups.

Celosia argentea
Celosia argentea | Keitou by Kunta Tokyo.

Celosia cristata
Celosia cristata by Muffet.

Celosia Growing and Care Guide

Common Names: Cockscomb, Yellow Toreador, Woolflower, Mfungu.
Life Cycle: Half hardy annual.
Height: 12 to 48 inches (30 to 120 cm).
Native: Africa.
Growing Region: Zones 2 to 10.
Flowers: Summer and early autumn.
Flower Details: Pink, yellow, red, orange. Amaranth-like.
Foliage: Green, Maroon. Veined.
Sow Outdoors: Cover seeds. Following last frost. Spacing 12 to 20 inches (30 to 50 cm).
Sow Indoors: Use Peat pots. Germination time: five days to two weeks. Temperature 70 to 75°F (21 to 24°C). Six to eight weeks before expected last frost. Transplant outdoors following the last frost.
Requirements: Full sunlight or light shade. Soil pH 6 to 7. Moist soil. Ordinary soil. Regular watering to maintain a moist soil. Light feed during whilst growing.
Family:
Closely Related Species:
Miscellaneous: Used as a food plant in India, West Africa, South America and parts of Southeast Asia. This genus has many medicinal uses including the treatment of tapeworm and mouth sores.

How to Grow Celosia

If planning to grow Cockscomb outdoors from seed then it is best to sow them in a partially shaded or sunny area of the garden before the last frost of spring. Once sown then celosia seeds should be covered.

They prefer soils that are moist with a pH of 6 to 7. If you plan to grow Celosia seedlings indoors first then they should be prepared about 7 or 8 weeks before planting then out after the last frost of spring. They take around one to two weeks to germinate at a temperature of about 22 to 24°C. The should be spaced from 30 to 45 cm apart depending upon the size of celosia species.

Caring for Celosia species such as Cockscomb

To ensure good growth of cockscomb the soil should be kept moist and a light feed given throughout the period of growth.