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Celosia cristata - Cockscomb


Common Name: Cockscomb[1]

Scientific Name: Celosia cristata

Thomas Jefferson recorded sowing Cockscomb at Shadwell, his boyhood home, in 1767.[2] This plant was introduced to Europe from Asia late in the 16th century,[3] and was a popular garden plant in America beginning in the early half of the 1700s.[4]

Cockscomb is a tender annual with a large, fan-like flower head.


  1. This article is based on a Center for Historic Plants Information Sheet.
  2. Betts, Garden Book, 4. Manuscript and transcription at the Massachusetts Historical Society.
  3. Joan Parry Dutton, Plants of Colonial Williamsburg (Williamsburg: Colonial Williamsburg, 1979), 97.
  4. David Stuart and James Sutherland, Plants from the Past: Old Flowers for New Gardens (London: Penguin Books, 1989), 74. See also Lawrence D. Griffith, Flowers and Herbs of Early America (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2008), 44.

Further Sources


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