Gomphrena (Gomphrena globosa) may sound a bit odd but if you want a wonderful add-on to your home garden, then you d better get used to this name. Gomphrena is also known as globe flower or globe amaranth, native to Panama and Guatemala.
As the name suggests, Gomphrena produces globe-shaped blossoms with papery bracts in dainty shades of lavender, purple, pink, red, magenta, blue, orange and white. Gomphrena s unique texture and beauty are highly valued for dried flower or cut flower arrangements. Gomphrena can reach about 25cm to 45cm in height and each tiny bloom measures about 1 inch in diameter.
Each Gomphrena plant can produce dozens of showy flower heads from midsummer to frost, displaying a serene view. This sun-loving plant attracts a variety of butterflies to your home garden— a perfect mix to brighten up your landscape effortlessly.
Common name: globe amaranth
Color: Pink, Red, White
Bloom time: Fall Bloom, Summer Bloom
Height: Height: 1.00 to 2.00 feet
Spread: 0.50 to 1.00 feet
Difficulty level: Easy
Planting & Care
Growing globe amaranth is not difficult at all. Start seeds indoors six weeks before the last frost. They will germinate faster if you soak them in water prior to planting. If you wish to sow them outdoors, wait until the soil has warmed and there is no chance of frost.
Sunlight: Although the plants tolerate partial shade, full sun makes for more vibrant blossoms.
Soil: well-drained soil with a pH range of about 5.8 to 6.2
Water: Water the gomphrena just enough to keep its root zone saturated. Add water when the topsoil is dry to the touch. Although this plant tolerates the warm weather of the Bay Area well, it flourishes when kept on a regular watering schedule.
Fertilizer: Fertilize the plant with a balanced, slow-release fertilizer with an N-P-K ratio such as 14-14-14 at planting. Add a water-soluble fertilizer according to the instructions on the label once every few weeks.
- Gomphrena grows easily from seed.
- Here are some tips how to propagate Gomphrena through germination.
- Start this process eight weeks before the last frost.
- Seed tray preparation – Scatter the seeds over equal parts of sand, potting soil and peat moss mixed together.
- Water carefully.
- Prevent the soil from crusting by covering the seed tray with a plastic bag.
- This will hold in the moisture.
- Gomphrena seeds need light to germinate.
- Place the tray in a bright place, but not in direct sunlight as excessive sun exposure may damage the sprouts.
- Full sun will also keep the soil warm.
- Once the spouts begin to emerge, remove the cover.
- Thin the sprouts – Keep the soil damp while the sprouts undergo thinning.
- When the seedlings reach about 2-3 inches high, transfer them carefully into a bigger container so they do not crowd each other in the seeding tray.
- Make sure not to injure the seedlings.
- Transplant the seedlings – Gomphrena will flourish best in a sunny spot outdoor if planted in warm and well-drained soil.
- It is drought-tolerant but it does not survive wet and soggy soil.
- Get ready to transplant Gomphrena seedlings into your home garden or a nice spot in your home.
- Allow 10-12 inches spacing between each plant.
- Once established, Gomphrena is actually maintenance-free.
- But if you want a healthy, deeply-coloured full plant, it s best to give your Gomphrena plant some extra pampering.
- Pruning: Pinch off the branches while it is young to promote bushier exterior.
- Also, pinch off wilted blooms.
- This will not only keep your plants neat and lovely but also prevent Gomphrena from seeding too early.
- The proper way to deadhead is by pinching the faded bloom with your fingernail, including the attached stem down to the succeeding bloom or leaf.
You can find many uses for this tidy annual in your flower garden:
Globe amaranth works well in container gardens
Include globe amaranth in your butterfly garden
Plant globe amaranth at the front of the border
Grow globe amaranth with other flowers that you can dry for crafts, like paper daisy or statice.