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Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Celosia revisited

I did a post on the genus Celosia last year but found some more species and thought it might be a good idea to do a follow up post on these to show the range and variety of the genus.
Here are two Celosia plants I had last year. As you can see from the flower structure they are quite different other than the furriness of the flowers.

Celosia
 The frustrating thing has been trying to identify them because so far all I have been able to find indicates that they are most likely different cultivars of Celosia argentea even though given how different the flowers look you would expect them to be distinct species. In the process of trying to identify them I came across various sources which point out that many so called species are actually synonymous for the same species. So in other words people have accorded different names to plants no doubt based on their difference in appearance where as in fact they are considered to be simply variations of the same species.
It seems that this issue is one still being thrashed out in botanical circles. That makes for an interesting if frustrating situation for those trying to pinpoint information on plants on this genus. I suppose that means I will be doing additional posts as I come across more of this genus and more information as to differentiating the different ones.
I will also keep an eye out and try to score some photos of other varieties and colours.

Celosia

Celosia argentea, Bristol 2014

Celosia argentea, Bristol 2014


Celosias are a genus of flowering plants in the plant family Amaranthaceae which have furry looking flowers. The familial name Amaranthaceae comes from the Greek ἀμάραντος (amarantos), which means "unfading."

Binomial Name: Celosia cristata
Common names: Celosia, Woolflower, Cockscomb, Crested cock’s comb (English); crête de coq (French); Silber-Brandschopf  Vulu (Samoan); Celosiau (Spanish); Mufugu (Swahili), Chi Kuan (Chinese)
Taxonomic hierarchy: 


Kingdom: Plantae - Plants
Subkingdom: Viridaeplantae – Green plants
Infrakingdom: Streptophyta – Land plants
Superdivision: Embryophytea – 
Division: Tracheophyta – Vascular plants, tracheophytes
Subdivision: Spermatophytina – Spermatophytes (seed plants)
Infradivision: Angiospermae – Angiosperms (flowering plants)
Class: Magnoliopsida – Diocotyledons
Superorder: Caryophyllanae –
Order: Caryophyllales –
Family: Amaranthaceae – Pigweed (English) Amaranthes (French)
Genus: Celosia – 
Species: C. cristata, C. argentea, C. spicata
C. argentea 'spicata', C. argentea 'cristata'

Notes: 
  • I am using the taxonomical classification system used by ITIS (Intergrated Taxonomic Information System). I have decided to use this system in order to avoid confusion as well as because it offers a comprehensive hierarchy from kingdom right through to subspecies whereas other sources only go as far as order or  provide the names of some of the higher taxonomical ranks but only indicate "unclassified" rather than providing the rank.
  • When and where possible I will endeavour to include alternatives classifications although  I may limit this to occasions where an opportunity arises to discuss the reason for the different classifications.
  • Taxonomical data used in this post was retrieved [February 11 2015], from the Integrated Taxonomic Information System on-line database, http://www.itis.gov.

References:

Books:


On-line sources:


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