Amaranthus tricolor. - This is a tender annual, - an old favorite of the flower-garden, - the chief beauty of which consists in its variegated leaves. Miller, in ancient times, says, "There is not a handsomer plant than this, in its full lustre-"
Gerarde thus speaks of it: "It farre exceedeth my skill to describe the beauty and excellencie of this rare plant, called Floramor; and I thinke the pensil of the most curious painter will be at a stay, when he shall come to set it downe in his lively colours. But to colour it after my best manner, this I say, Floramor hath a thicke, knobby root, whereon do grow many threddie strings; from which ariseth a thicke stalke, but tender and soft, which beginneth to divide itself into sundry branches at the ground, and so vpward, whereupon doth grow many leaves, wherein does consist his beauty: for in few words, euerie leafe resem-bleth in colour the most faire and beautifull feather of a Parot, especially those feathers that are mixed with most sundry colours, as a stripe of red, and a line of yellow, a dash of white, and a rib of green colour, which I cannot with words set forth, such are the sundry mixture of colours that Nature hath bestowed, in her greatest jolitie, vpon this floure. The floure doth grow betweene the footstalks of those leaves and the body of the stalk or trunk, base, and of no moment in respect of the leaves, being as it were little chaffie husks of an ouerworne tawny colour; the seed is black, and shining like burnished home."
A. hypockondriacus. - Prince's Feather. - This is a hardy annual, well known, four or five feet high, with numerous heads of purplish-crimson flowers, suitable for the shrubbery.
A. superbus is an improved variety of the last; flowers dark red; three to four feet high; from June to September.
A. caudatus. - Love-lies-bleeding. - This is also a well-known hardy annual, from three to four feet high, with blood-red flowers, which hang in pendant spikes, and, at a little distance, look like streams of blood; in July and August. It is sometimes called, in France, "Discipline des religieuses - the Nun's Whipping-rope.
There is another variety, with straw-colored flowers, but it is too mean-looking for the flower-garden