Celosia is a strange and fantastic flower whose red, pink, purple, gold and bi-coloured blooms bring interest and texture to any floral display.

It is sometimes referred to as cockscomb because of it’s likeness to a rooster’s comb or wool flower and brain celosia because it looks to some like the wrinkles of a multicoloured brain! When grown together the flowers have the appearance of fire which explains their name which is derived from the Greek word, ‘kelos‘ which means ‘burning’.

There are around 60 different species of Celosia. It is grown as an annual, both indoor and outdoors, and flowers from summer through to late autumn, continuing to bloom for up to 10 weeks.

The blooms are usually 2-5 inches across and made up of many tiny flowers which continue to open over time, hence the long flowering period.

Celosia_1bOf course, we wouldn’t even be talking about them here if they didn’t also make excellent, long-lasting cut flowers easily lasting up to a fortnight as part of a display. The long stiff stems also make it very versatile and what it lacks in scent it makes up for in texture and interest.

Celosia is In season throughout the Summer and Autumn, it’s an excellent choice for seasonal displays and is stunning in wedding bouquets and button-holes as it holds up well in heat so won’t fade through a long day without water.

The flower’s origins are unconfirmed but it is widely believed to have begun life in India. The variety we use is known as Celosia Crisata. It is thought to have been developed from Celosia Argentea. Argentea is grown in West Africa, Central Africa and South east Asia as a leaf vegetable crop and is, in fact, to this day the most important leaf crop in Nigeria, known as Soko.

This relation to leaf crop is another of Celosia’s highlights, as it is completely non toxic so can be used in bouquets and displays that may come into contact with animals and children. It is reportedly edible, although we wouldn’t recommend you eat it!

If you would like to include Celosia in your next floral display, be it a bouquet, wedding flowers, corporate arrangement or funeral tribute, please feel free to get in touch and discuss your requirements with Lucy.