Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Love-lies (Amaranthus caudatus)


Special Features: Beds/Borders Cut Flowers Fast Growing Flowers Rapid Grower Companion Plants Combine with castor bean (Ricinus) or fountain grass (Pennisetum).

Perfect along a fence or wall or the middle or rear of a flower bed, love-lies-bleeding is a stunning annual that reaches shrublike proportions, quickly growing 2 to 6 feet tall and wide upon maturity. Its long, ropelike clusters of flowers -- in gold with a greenish tinge or in dark red, pink, or white resemble tassels, hence the common name tassel flower. Some types produce upright red or green spikes. Foliage is generally deep green, but varieties are available with different colors. Red stems and bronzy fall color add interest to the late fall garden. Notable Varieties'Molten Fire' is 3 feet tall with carmine red leaves. 'Fire King' is 3 to 4 feet tall with dark red and scarlet leaves. CareKeep well-watered, but will rot if kept too wet. Fertilize by working in compost two or three times during the season or by applying a slow-release fertilizer, following label directions exactly. Stake taller varieties. lanting Plant established seedlings outdoors after all danger of frost has passed in spring. Or start seedlings in a very warm spot 3 to 4 weeks prior to last frost. Space plants 18 to 36 inches apart in the garden. Pests and DiseasesAphid, spider mites, and aster yellows-virus can all cause problems for love-lies bleeding.

No comments: