Emilia are hardy and half hardy annuals that reach from 40 to 60 cm in height.
Depending on the species they flower from Summer through the start of Autumn.
They carry small ball like scarlet flowers, and are ideal for use in the border and for use in flower arranging.
Common names for Emilia include Flora's Paintbrush, Devil's Paintbrush and Tassel flower.
Emilia fosbergii - Florida tasselflower by Pellaea.
Emilia sonchifoli by Isis Vieira Barbosa.
Common Names: Tasselflower, Pualale, Florida Tasselflower, Lilac Tasselflower.
Life Cycle: Hardy annual, half hardy annual.
Height: 16 to 20 inches (40 to 50 cm).
Native: Tropics, sub-tropics.
Growing Region: Zones 3 to 10.
Flowers: Summer, autumn.
Flower Details: Red, orange, yellow. Ball-shaped tufts.
Sow Outside: Cover seed. Four weeks before last frost. Spacing 10 inches (20 cm).
Sow Inside: Use Peat pots. Germination time: one to two weeks in the dark. Temperature 60 to 70°F (16 to 21°C). Seven or eight weeks in advance. Transplant outdoors three weeks after the last frost.
Requirements: Full sunlight. Good drainage. Average soil. Deadhead.
Miscellaneous: Great plant for a butterfly garden.
Flora's Paintbrush and other Emilia should be sown into a sunny part of the garden either after the last frost of spring or in the autumn.
Once sown the Emilia seeds should be lightly covered with topsoil. They prefer to grow in a sunny area of the garden that has good drainage; the soil should be dry.
If you want to first grow Flora's Paintbrush seedlings indoors then they should be prepared about eight weeks before they are due to be transplanted into the garden in the middle of spring, a few weeks after the last possible frost.
The seeds of Emilia species are best planted in peat pots, and typically take one to two weeks to germinate in the dark at a temperature of 15 to 21 degrees Centigrade.
The Emilia plants should be put in the garden at about 25 cm apart. If you space them a little but closer then you may be able to create more blooms.