PRINCE'S-FEATHER

Amaranthus hypochondriacus

Goosefoot Family [Amaranthaceae]

month8jul month8july month8aug month8sep month8sept

status
statusZcasual
 
flower
flower8red
 
flower
flower8green
 
flower
flower8yellow
 
inner
inner8cream
 
morph
morph8actino
 
petals
petalsZ3
(2)-3
type
typeZspiked
 
stem
stem8round
 
stem
stem8fluted
 
sex
sexZmonoecious
 

13th Aug 2010, grounds, Kingston Manor, IoW. Photo: (CC by 2.0) Geoff Toone
Very similar to Purple Amaranth (Amaranthus cruentus) which also has flowers which are either red, or green, or yellow. But Purple Amaranth has a floppy inflorescence (stiff on Prince's-feather), plus bracts which have a stout midrib (thin on Prince's-feather) and styles which are thicker at their base (not thickened at base on Prince's-feather). However, the also similar Love-lies-bleeding (Amaranthus caudatus) has a much floppier inflorescence which are pendant and usually comes in deep-red but can be either green or yellow or white.


13th Aug 2010, grounds, Kingston Manor, IoW. Photo: (CC by 2.0) Geoff Toone
The terminal inflorescence is often longer than 30cm and heavy.


13th Aug 2010, grounds, Kingston Manor, IoW. Photo: (CC by 2.0) Geoff Toone


13th Aug 2010, grounds, Kingston Manor, IoW. Photo: (CC by 2.0) Geoff Toone
The leaves are here broad-lanceolate with smudges of the prevailing colour of the inflorescence, modulated by the greenness of chlorophyll. The leaves join the main stem by a long leaf-stalk which continues conjoined down the stem for quite a distance before merging fully.


10th April 2018, Portsdown Hill, Hampshire Photo: © Dawn Nelson

A striking colour duo resemblance between speckled leaves and walking pole: 'In the Land of Grey and Pink' - Caravan.


10th April 2018, Portsdown Hill, Hampshire Photo: © Dawn Nelson
The longest bracteoles of the female flowers are equal to or up to 1.5 times longer than the perianth (= calyx + corolla length). Also, the tepals all taper to an acute-angled apex and there are 3-5 [not 2-(3)] tepals which are just shorter than to longer than the fruit. The fruit is irregularly dehiscent. There are some fruits in the photo, they are concolorous with every other detail apart from the styles which are fawn-coloured.


10th April 2018, Portsdown Hill, Hampshire Photo: © Dawn Nelson
The bracts are shorter than (or equalling) the extent of the styles. Almost all Amaranths (usually including this one) are monoecious, with separate male and female flowers which are all on the same plant. Your Author surmises that the male flowers are those with much wider fawn bits (the anthers? - but it is hard to be sure).


Not to be semantically confused with : Parrot's Feather (Myriophyllum aquaticum), Feathery Rhodes-grass (Chloris virgat), [plants with similar names belonging to differing families].

It is a rather rare casual plant (but because it is not native, does not get any [R] rating). It is probably derived from Powell's Amaranth whilst in North America. It is now found in SW England and South Wales.


  Amaranthus hypochondriacus  ⇐ Global Aspect ⇒ Amaranthaceae  

Distribution
 family8Goosefoot family8Amaranthaceae

 BSBI maps
genus8Amaranthus
Amaranthus
(Pigweeds)

PRINCE'S-FEATHER

Amaranthus hypochondriacus

Goosefoot Family [Amaranthaceae]