Types Of Celosias

Growing Different Types of Celosias


Those of us who are not very familiar with celosias may be surprised to find that there are actually different types of celosias. We typically associate them with long feathery plumes of orange or red but there are actually three different types of celosias and they come in many colors! Keep reading to learn about the three kinds of celosias and how they can be planted and grown in your own garden.




One of the most well known types of celosias is the plumed variety. This kind produces silky clusters of brightly colored flowers that sit on top of 24 inch stalks. Plumed celosias can typically grow in USDA zones two through eleven, which is a broad range of environments that can support this beautiful plant. There are many species of plant that fall into the plumed celosia. You might find the cristata and plumosa varieties to be very appealing. The celosia cristata species, which is commonly referred to as ‘flamingo feathers,” can be expected to produce flowers that range between pink and purple on the color scale. These bright colors are reminiscent of a sunrise and are in terrific contrast to the dark leaves that serve as a soft bedding below the tall flower stalks. The plumosa, also known as the “Prince of Wales Feathers,” produces a wider range of colors than the cristata variety. With various shades of yellow, orange, red, and pink, this variety is likely to invoke thoughts of a sunset. If you want a showy flower that is regal yet soft and whimsical, then the plumed celosia may be one of the best types of celosias for your garden.




One of the other types of celosias is the crested variety. The crested celosia is also known as the cock’s comb celosia. These flowers are quite different from the plumed variety because unlike the wispy featherlike flowers of the plumed celosia, the crested flowers look like tight coils that resemble the likeness of a brain or, as its nickname suggests, the comb of a cockerel or rooster. They have medium green leaves and can grow up to three feet in height. There are quite a few varieties of crested celosias, such as the ‘Jewelbox,’ ‘Chief,’ and ‘Sparkler’ species, and they come in a large range of colors. For most species, you can find the crested celosia in red, yellow, orange, white, pink, and purple. The rippling waves that make up each crested celosia’s flower are eye catching and tidy in appearance and would be the perfect addition to a formal garden.




The spiky celosia is the final category of celosia. This type of celosia is similar to the plumed variety except that it has stiffer flowers that combine to form a large pointed mass. The spiky celosias typically don’t grow as tall as the other varieties with a modest 12 to 16 inch height average. This variety comes in yellow, red, dark red, pink, purple, and blue. The spiky varieties would be great if you want the darker color varieties or if you need a shorter celosia to plant in your garden.


Where to Plant Celosias


Due to the fact that these plants have a tall average height, they are best served in an area where their height won’t “get in the way.” They are very suitable for use as a border plant, such as along the side of a house or shed or planted up against a fence. They can also do well in mass plantings, especially if you want to fill up an empty corner in your garden. Beware that these plants can easily become invasive if they are not thinned out, so you might want to avoid putting them near other plants that might easily be choked out by the celosia. The ideal spot for the celosia should get plenty of sunlight, say at least six hours a day. They can grow in almost any soil, even heavy clay soils, so this probably won’t be an issue for you.


How to Plant Celosias


Celosias that have been purchased from the store “already grown” should be planted in a hole that’s about twice the size of the celosia’s roots. It can help to make a small slit downward through the center of the roots to help them take in nutrients and have room to maneuver. Fill up the gaps in the hole with soil. You can use plant food or fertilizer if you like but it really isn’t a necessity with this species. If you are planting more than one celosia then you should take care to space them out about a foot apart. This is important because these plants grow well and fairly fast, and you will find that the gap between the plants soon closes in. Give the soil a deep watering but avoid overwatering as this can make the newly turned soil turn muddy and heavy.


Caring for All Types of Celosias


There is little that you need to do in the way of extended care for this plant. You may find it necessary to thin out the celosia if it becomes very invasive with your other plants or if it simply starts to spread to areas that you don’t want it to. You can use the flower stalks as cut flowers, but be sure to trim the stalks close to the ground.