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Amaranthus hypochondriacus 'Pygmy Torch'

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© RHS 1999

Characteristics

Plant type

Annual/Biennial

Habit

Bushy

Resilience

Hardiness

old H3 (may need winter protection)

Colour

Flower

Dark Red in Autumn and Summer

Foliage

Green in Autumn, Spring and Summer

Size

Ultimate height

0.1-0.5 metres

Ultimate spread

0.1-0.5 metres

Time to ultimate height

1 year


Preferred common name

prince's feather 'Pygmy Torch'

Family

Amaranthaceae


Amaranthus can be upright or spreading annuals or short-lived perennials, with simple leaves and tiny flowers borne in dense, erect or pendulous, catkin-like inflorescences in summer and autumn

'Pygmy Torch' is a compact annual with lance-shaped green leaves and erect, deep maroon inflorescences, good for drying

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun

Aspect

  • South-facing or West-facing
  • Sheltered

Cultivation

Under glass, grow in loam-based potting compost such as John InnesNumber 2, in full sun in a sheltered position. Outdoors grow in a moderately fertile, humus-rich soil in full sun, in a sheltered position

Soil

  • Moist but well-drained
  • Acid, Alkaline or Neutral
  • Loam

Propagation

Sow seed at 20°C (68°F) in mid spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Cottage/Informal Garden or Flower borders and beds


How to care

Pruning

None required

Pests

Aphids may be a problem

Diseases

A virus may be troublesome