Celosia: Houseplant of the Month for July
Celebrate summer with Celosia: brilliant colours, eye-catching shapes and soft velvety flowers that you want to touch.
‘Exuberant’ is a good word to describe Celosia. A bit different, flamboyant, authentic and unique. And that makes it utterly contemporary. For starters, it’s incredibly varied. There is a species with flaming torches (plumosa, with tall plumes), and one with smaller, pointy flowers (spicata). There’s one with graceful little spikes: Celosia argentea. And there’s one with flowers shaped like a fairytale comb filled with velvet coils that look like brains: cristata (Mother Nature was having fun the day she came up with this one).
- The flowers come in dazzling colours: white, red, yellow, pink, purple, orange, green or multicoloured combining orange and red, for example.
- Sometimes the leaves are also coloured, which lends additional decorative value to the plant.
- Celosia grows to a height of 35-40 cm, and has a slightly spicy fragrance.
- Apart from enough water, this stunner needs nothing to keep it blooming beautifully for months.
Beauty without rules
Celosia is the sort of plant that laughs at the idea of a customisable world in which only the perfect picture counts. It’s a free spirit that grows in tropical parts of Africa, Asia, Indonesia and South America. There are around 45 known species, most of which do their own thing: brighten things up, serve as a source of food, shine as an exotic field flower or sparkle in your home. That makes it a houseplant that meets the growing need for authenticity, whereby it no longer matters whether all the flowers and petals are exactly the same size.
The name Celosia is derived from the Greek word ‘keleos’ which means ‘burning’ and refers to the flame shape of the ancestral species.
How to style Celosia
Celosia’s colours and shapes fit perfectly with the trendy urban vibe. Think of pots with a graffiti design, painted cans, recycled plastic, sombre concrete and bubblegum colours. Strong patterns, bold colours and the absence of a consistent style reinforce the sense of a unique, personal combination that is in keeping with the times.
Celosia symbolises boldness. The ‘bit different’ Celosia makes an excellent gift if you want to wish someone courage for something exciting.
How to keep Celosia flowering for a long time
- Partial shade, light, full sun: Celosia can cope with any of it.
- Don’t allow the soil to dry out – this houseplant likes a drink.
- Some plant food once a week extends the flowering.
- Don’t place Celosia near a fruit bowl. Fruit emits ethylene gas which causes flowers to age more rapidly.
- If you like, Celosia is also happy to join you on the patio.
- Celosia gives its all. When the flowering ends it’s exhausted and no new flowers will appear.
For more information see: www.Thejoyofplants.co.uk
Published on: 21 June 2020