19 Beautiful Varieties of Gomphrena: Globe Amaranth

With its distinctive globe-shaped blooms and rainbows of colors, gomphrena is a whimsical flower particularly suited to pollinator gardens and floral arrangements. Garden expert Logan Hailey digs into the most dazzling cultivars of globe amaranth to add form and flare to your garden.

A profusion of globe amaranth flowers, radiant in purple hues, create a vibrant display, their spherical shapes adding visual allure. Supported by lush green stems adorned with verdant leaves, they exude natural beauty and grace in abundance.


Gomphrena, or globe amaranth, is a mesmerizing flower adored by humans and pollinators alike. These ultra-resilient blooming annuals or tender perennials thrive in full sunlight and tolerate hot, humid conditions without worry. While gomphrena is a member of the Amaranthaceae family, it bears little resemblance to the much larger, seedy spikes of its amaranth cousins. 

The distinctive spherical blooms come in a tremendous diversity of colors, adding charm and whimsical form to border beds, containers, and floral arrangements. The papery flowers are ideal for dried arrangements and crafts because they retain their color and shape after harvesting. 

Let’s dig into 19 enchanting varieties of gomphrena for your cut flower garden or pollinator patch!

What is Gomphrena?

Vibrant purple globe amaranth flowers stand out against lush green foliage as they soak up the sunlight in a garden. Their spherical blooms add a burst of color, creating a striking contrast against the verdant backdrop of leaves.
These plants grow up to 4 feet tall in full sun.

Globe amaranth, also known as gomphrena, is a frost-tender perennial or annual flower. The rainbow hues of early summer ball-shaped flowers are lovely in fresh or dried floral arrangements. The spherical blooms comprise many tiny papery bracts, yielding a unique texture and gumdrop shape perfect for crafting or ornamental pollinator patches.

Plants take an average of 40-60 days to bloom from seed and don’t mind hot, humid weather. They grow two to four feet tall and thrive in full sunlight. Globe amaranth adds bursts of color and form to border beds and large containers. Butterflies, hummingbirds, and bees adore gomphrena and regularly hover over the showy, vibrant globes.

19 Best Varieties of Globe Amaranth

Vivid purple globe amaranth flowers bloom gracefully atop brown stems, adding a burst of color to the scene. Lush green leaves nestle beneath, providing a verdant contrast and enhancing the vibrancy of the composition.
Gomphrena globosa and Gomphrena haageana offer diverse cultivars suited for small spaces.

This genus includes dozens of cultivars that come from the two main species of gomphrena:

  • Gomphrena globosa: This compact tropical annual from Central America is a lower-growing species with fuzzy foliage.
  • Gomphrena haageana: A tender perennial wildflower native to North America, this globe amaranth is taller and has large, brightly-colored bracts. It is a perennial in zones 9-11.

In general, globosa varieties are best for small spaces, while haageana varieties are ideal for large floral landscape plantings. Here are 19 of the most dazzling varieties of gomphrena: 

Top Pick: ‘QIS Fiery Sunrise Blend’

'QIS Fiery Sunrise Blend' flowers, vibrant red hues against lush green foliage. Each petal seems ablaze with the warmth of dawn. The stems and leaves form a verdant backdrop, enhancing the fiery beauty of the blossoms.
This resilient gomphrena variety is ideal for southern regions.

If you can’t quite choose a single color, this blend has all the sunrise-inspired hues you need for striking arrangements. The showy, bright globes of this haageana variety emerge from 24-26” tall plants in rounded clusters of peach, fuschia, and red. 

This gomphrena hardly flinches during extreme heat or long droughts and flowers almost continuously throughout the summer. Native to New Mexico, Texas, and northern Mexico, the ‘Fiery Sunrise Blend’ grows particularly well in southern gardens. It remains perennial in zones 9-11 but often grows as an annual cut flower in northern gardens.

‘QIS Carmine’

A close-up of a pink 'QIS Carmine' flower stands out against its elongated leaves. In the blurred backdrop, two more 'QIS Carmine' blooms and foliage add to the enchanting botanical scenery.
The ‘QIS Carmine’ is known for its extra hardiness and bred for cut flower growers.

The intense crimson color of ‘Carmine’ provides a captivating contrast to brighter flower colors in borders or containers. This compact variety blooms prolifically all summer long with richly colored circular blossoms. The hue of the petals and bracts is consistent throughout the season and after harvesting, making them perfect for dried floral displays. ‘QIS Carmine’ is low maintenance and excellent for beginners.

The QIS series of gomphrena stands for Quality in Seed. These cultivars are bred for extra hardy plants for cut flower growers. You technically cannot save and resell seeds from these trademarked varieties.

‘QIS Orange’

A close-up of a 'QIS Orange' flower, its petals radiating warmth, cradled by green leaves and stem. In the background, a soft blur reveals a garden adorned with more 'QIS Orange' blooms and verdant foliage.
Globe Amaranth ‘QIS Orange’ matures in 85-100 days from seed.

If you love oranges, this is the best gomphrena variety for you! The burst of warmth and vivid orange makes this cultivar a nice complement to more intense reds and pinks. A classic haageana variety, ‘QIS Orange’ is fairly tall and produces long stems. The blooms are about one and a half inches in diameter and reliably flower in even the toughest conditions. They are particularly uniform and retain their color for everlasting bouquets.

‘QIS Orange’ takes roughly 85-100 days to mature from seed, but you can start early by seeding in cell flats six to eight weeks before your last frost. No pinching or support is necessary for these highly branched plants.

‘QIS Pink’

A vivid purple 'QIS Pink' flower blooms, its delicate petals unfurling gracefully. In the background, a gentle blur reveals a sea of 'QIS Pink' blossoms, each swaying in unison with the soft breeze, painting a serene scene.
This drought-tolerant annual is ideal for creating pompom-shaped bouquets.

With its charming romance and softness, this delicate pink gomphrena is at once cute and elegant. It looks dazzling in a pastel-hued bed of whites and purples. The blush pink blooms have accents of creamy white in their centers and bracts. 

Like other globosa varieties, this frost-tender annual is highly drought-tolerant and produces its elegant flowers even amidst extreme heat. The plants grow 18-28” and can fit in larger containers. They thrive in full sunlight and require spacing around six to eight inches between plants. Harvest the medium-length stems and bundle them together for an adorable pink pompom shape of fresh or dried blooms. 

‘QIS Lilac’

'QIS Lilac' flowers featuring delicate purple petals, exuding a gentle allure. In the background, a diverse array of potted plants creates a soft, blurred canvas, adding depth and context to the floral focal point.
The ‘QIS Lilac’ reaches its full height of 24-26 inches.

Pastel purple globe amaranth flowers add a tranquil hue to ornamental beds and pollinator patches. This soothing, lilac-colored gomphrena is romantic and well-suited to cottage gardens. When planted en masse, it makes a dreamy border alongside white and blush pink varieties. 

But in spite of its delicate color, ‘QIS Lilac’ gomphrena is just as adaptable and resilient as other types. Wider spacing of eight to ten inches ensures that the 24-26” tall branched plants can grow to their full glory. 


A purple 'Fireworks' flower with delicate yellow stamens stands out against a softly blurred background. In the gentle breeze, a multitude of these blossoms dance, their colors intertwining in a mesmerizing display of nature's beauty.
This globe amaranth variety boasts pollinator-attracting blossoms with neon-yellow stamens.

If you need to fill a larger space with gumdrop-shaped flowers on tall stems, ‘Fireworks’ gomphrena is a showstopping low-maintenance annual with large clumps averaging two to three feet across. This cottage garden classic features gorgeous tufts of iridescent hot pink flowers with sprinkles of bright yellow. The long stems are perfect for cutting and drying. 

‘Fireworks’ was introduced in 2009 by Ball Horticulture and has become increasingly popular for architectural floral landscaping. The pollinator-attracting blossoms hover very high above the basal foliage, setting this variety apart from other gomphrenas.

The neon-yellow stamens protrude from hot pink flower bracts, giving the appearance of a joyous fireworks display. It has a multi-dimensional habit that looks stunning in large plantings on the borders of your garden.

‘Lavender Lady’

Purple ‘Lavender Lady’ flowers bloom gracefully on slender stems, exuding delicate elegance. Their rich hue contrasts beautifully against the soft, muted backdrop of green leaves, offering a serene harmony of colors in nature's canvas.
The seeds of ‘Lavender Lady’ germinate best in soil temperatures of 70-80°F (21-27°C).

For a rare gomphrena variety, try sowing ‘Lavender Lady’ for its graceful lavender-colored globes. This everlasting flower is virtually carefree. It is heat and drought-tolerant, providing adorable clover-shaped purple blooms for most of the frost-free growing season. You can use the flowers for dried bouquets, flower crowns, or floral chains to brighten up your winter decor.

This compact globosa variety stays under two feet tall and is a better option for small spaces and containers than the larger types. Still, you should provide plants with at least ten inches of space. The warmth-loving seeds germinate best in soil temperatures between 70-80°F (21-27°C) and take 5-14 days to sprout.  

‘Strawberry Fields’

A red 'Strawberry Fields' flower in close-up, its petals unfurling gracefully under the sunlight, contrasts against a soft, blurred backdrop. In the distance, another 'Strawberry Fields' bloom sways gently amidst a sea of verdant grasses.
Select a sunny location when planting ‘Strawberry Fields’ Globe Amaranth.

The aptly named ‘Strawberry Fields’ gomphrena is known for its strawberry-red blooms that closely resemble the iconic ripe berries. The medley of reds and pinks adds vibrant sweetness to arrangements, borders, and containers.

This variety is compact and bushy, with long-lasting blooms that bring color throughout the summer and maintain their cheery strawberry color into the fall and winter in everlasting bouquets.

Plant in the most sun-drenched location area and watch these vivid flowers bloom with little to no effort. The sturdy 16-18” long stems provide the perfect foundation for the berry-themed flowers. This variety is particularly stunning when grown en masse and sprinkled with a pink or white gomphrena to add contrast and dimension.

‘Audray White’

A close-up of delicate 'Audray White' flowers resembling soft cotton, their pristine petals unfurling gracefully. Green leaves provide a lush backdrop, complementing the purity of the blossoms with their verdant hues.
The timeless, pure white blooms of ‘Audray White’ are ideal for bridal bouquets.

This timeless gomphrena has been cultivated in cottage gardens for centuries. The pristine white blooms are bright and pure, without much creaminess. ‘Audray White’ adds a serene atmosphere to your pollinator patch or an elegant touch to a bridal bouquet.

The low-maintenance plants are compact and uniform, making them popular for front yard edging and wedding design work. I especially love the sturdiness and intensity of the white button-shaped blossoms, making them easy to work with when crafting.

‘Audray Pink’

Countless purple 'Audray Pink' blossoms, gracefully supported by slender stems, create a captivating spectacle. Each bloom is surrounded by lush green leaves, adding a verdant frame to their exquisite beauty.
The ‘Audray Pink’ variety features yellow accents in the stamens and flower bracts.

This clover-pink variety is highly uniform and ideal for mass plantings or orderly borders where you want a refined landscape aesthetic. The flowers are more of a cool lavender hue and bloom on elongated stems for cutting. ‘Audray Pink’ is a popular bedding plant variety for landscapers and does well in containers. 

The upright growth supports itself without the need for staking. Like many of the other pink varieties, this gomphrena is splattered with yellow accents in the stamens and sometimes the flower bracts.

‘Audray Purple-Red’

Deep purple 'Audray Purple-Red' flowers bloom against a backdrop of blurred green leaves, their hues intertwining in a mesmerizing dance of nature's palette. A symphony of rich purples and lush greens, the 'Audray Purple-Red' flowers stand out.
The ‘Audray Purple-Red’ variety of gomphrena requires careful transplanting in colder climates.

The name says it all! This globe amaranth flowers in a unique shade somewhere between fuschia purple and crimson red. The plants are similar to ‘QIS Purple’ and produce equally as abundantly, but they flower later and grow taller. If you love long-stemmed arrangements of vibrant colors, this is the cultivar for you!

At 95-110 days to maturity, the ‘Audray’ series of gomphrena requires a bit more patience than others. The plants need prolonged frost-free weather and benefit from a headstart in early spring if you live in a colder climate.

Direct seeding is not recommended in northern zones because these varieties are extra sensitive to cold. Don’t forget to harden off the transplants in a protected area for about a week before you move them outside into the garden.

‘Audray Mix’

 'Audray Mix' flowers displaying a rich blend of deep purples and delicate pinks, complemented by vibrant green foliage. In the background, a gentle blur reveals a profusion of blue 'Audray Mix' blooms, adding to the lush floral tapestry.
Globe amaranth ‘Audray Mix’ offers a uniform blend of pink-hued gumdrop flowers.

The quintessential globe amaranth blend, this mix is iconic for cut flower growers! The varying hues include fuschia, pastel pink, pure white, and light purple flowers with white centers. The tall plants grow to 18-28” and produce one and a half inch blooms atop extra-long stems. 

This mixes flowers later in the season than some other varieties, but is highly uniform and extremely productive. The pink-hued gumdrop flowers resemble a mass of Valentines-worthy buttons. Dry and save the blooms for everlasting bouquets to use in early spring at love-themed events. 

‘Audray Mix’ is a seed blend including many of the individual varieties described above, such as ‘Audray White,’ ‘Bicolor Rose,’ ‘Audray Pink,’ and ‘Audray Purple Red.’ A pre-mixed batch is ideal for growing complementary colors in the garden, where you don’t want to worry about awkward clumps of mismatched hues.

‘Raspberry Cream’

A 'Raspberry Cream' flower close-up reveals delicate, translucent petals adorned with glistening dew drops, evoking a sense of morning freshness. Behind, the blurred background unveils the graceful elongated leaves, enhancing the flower's natural elegance and charm.
The ‘Raspberry Cream’ variety features vibrant pink blossoms reminiscent of raspberry ice cream.

Pinkish-raspberry and creamy-white blossoms add a striking color palette of contrast and playfulness. ‘Raspberry Cream’ gomphrena is compact and ideal for mixed plantings or patio containers.

The rich color of pink is almost as enticing as raspberry ice cream, and the extra-long stems create gorgeous bouquet bundles. When the sunlight hits them just right, ‘Raspberry Cream’ flowers glimmer and glow in a breathtaking rich pink hue.

‘Ping Pong’

A close-up of purple 'Ping Pong' flowers illuminated by sunlight, their delicate petals unfolding gracefully. In the background, lush greenery softly blurs, enhancing the vivid hue of the blossoms in this serene natural scene.
The ‘Ping Pong’ variety is a compact annual with deep purple ball-shaped flowers.

This globosa variety is the perfect compact annual for smaller yards. The eye-catching purple is deep and rich, offering an explosion of playful color infused with ball-shaped flowers. Like most globe amaranth varieties, the plants are amazingly drought-tolerant and don’t ask for any maintenance during the growing season. Mass plantings create a glorious wildflower patch that will draw in bees and butterflies from near and far.

‘Buddy Purple’

'Buddy Purple' flowers bloom, their rich hue catching the eye. Rounded petals form a delicate cluster, radiating a deep purple shade, captivating in its intensity. Lush green leaves serve as a verdant canvas, complementing the vivid blossoms.
Do not cultivate ‘Buddy Purple’ for floral arrangements as its sturdy plants lack long stems.

Another globosa type, this cultivar is extra showy and tolerant of almost any soil as long as it’s well-drained. ‘Buddy Purple’ flowers resemble ultra-bright clover blossoms with rich violet bracts. The Buddy series is bred for a dwarfed, mounding habit that grows just under one foot tall and wide, making them ideal for containers, patios, rock gardens, and low-growing bedding plants. 

However, avoid growing ‘Buddy Purple’ if you want to harvest gomphrena for bouquets. The stout plants do not have the classic elongated stems of other types. Instead, the Buddy series has been bred for shorter stems that thrive best in ornamental borders.

‘Las Vegas Mix’

In a vivid field, 'Las Vegas Mix' globe amaranth blooms, showcasing a striking division between purple and white flowers. The green stems wind gracefully, supporting lush leaves that add depth to the colorful floral tapestry.
Sow ‘Las Vegas Mix’ alongside drought-tolerant wildflowers for a vibrant meadow garden.

This festive blend of globe amaranth includes many shades of purple, pink, and white. Its eye-catching rainbow adds a hint of celebration to the garden. These carefree versatile plants are mid-sized, averaging 18” tall and 18-24” wide. They are great for growing in containers or border beds alongside marigolds, petunias, and celosias. 

Broadcast large handfuls of ‘Las Vegas Mix’ into a meadow garden for a quick-growing splash of color. Drought-tolerant wildflowers like echinacea (coneflower), black-eyed Susan, coreopsis, yarrow, and blanketflowers would be great companions. These plants bloom in less than three months after seeding, but they cannot be planted until the weather is reliably frost-free.


A close-up of an 'Aurea' flower, its crimson petals unfurling gracefully, contrasts with the soft, fuzzy texture of its leaves. Against a softly blurred background, the intricate details of the velvety leaves and delicate flower are illuminated.
The ‘Aurea’ variety of globe amaranth is highly drought-resistant and heat-tolerant.

This rare haageana cultivar has pretty apricot-colored button flowers that sometimes include shades of gold, yellow, and orange. ‘Aurea’ is fairly compact for a haageana but still needs 9-12” of space between plants. It has an upright habit with nicely branched stems.

The wildflower equivalent of this variety is often called Rio Grande globe amaranth due to its prevalence in south Texas and northern Mexico. The native range of this gomphrena is a testament to its drought resilience and heat tolerance. Supplementary irrigation is only necessary in the longest periods of summer drought.

‘Gnome Purple’

'Gnome Purple' flowers dance gracefully, their lush green stems swaying in the breeze, a picturesque scene. Behind them, a soft blur reveals a sea of more 'Gnome Purple' blossoms, adding depth to the enchanting floral display.
The ‘Gnome Purple’ variety boasts charming violet-hued flowers and dark green foliage.

The Gnome series of globe amaranth is bred for long-lasting color and extra dwarf growth. These little plants grow a maximum of 10-12” tall and wide. They’re perfect for full-sun borders and mixed containers. ‘Gnome Purple’ is charmingly violet-hued with perfect little balls-shaped flowers. It has extra dark green foliage for a nice contrasted backdrop. 

‘Gnome Mix’

A cluster of 'Gnome Mix' flowers showcasing an array of lavender and purple blooms. The delicate petals contrast against the lush green leaves nestled below, adding depth to the floral composition with their varying hues and textures.
A compact and colorful blend called ‘Gnome Mix’ is ideal for small gardens.

If you have a small garden yet crave a burst of low-maintenance color, ‘Gnome Mix’ is the best selection. This blend of whites, purples, and pinks is the lowest-growing globe amaranth on the market. This dwarf annual boasts profusions of flowers all summer long, magnetizing bees and butterflies.

The plants are just as heat-tolerant as their relatives but won’t grow to large heights. In cold climates, be sure to start seeds indoors six to eight weeks before your expected last frost. 


Does gomphrena come back every year?

Most gomphrenas are tender perennials grown as annuals. They only return every year in zones 9-11. However, some plants will self-seed. These frost-sensitive flowers are extremely easy to grow and benefit from a headstart indoors in colder climates.

Does gomphrena bloom all summer?

The colorful globe-shaped flowers of gomphrena reliably grace your garden all summer long. Most varieties take 80-100 days to mature and flower until the first frost of fall. The vibrant colors and adorable button shapes offer striking diversity and dimension. For more compact plants, choose cultivars of G. globosa, but for longer cut-flower stems, grow G. haageana varieties.

What are the different types of globe amaranth?

The two main types of globe amaranth are Gomphrena globosa and Gomphrena haageana. Globosa types are warm-weather annuals with more compact growth. Haageana types are tender perennials with taller growth and elongated stems, but they are only perennial in zones 9-11. Many northern flower growers will grow several cultivars of both species throughout the summer.

If you have a small growing space or ornamental beds, choose globosa types. If you want to fill a larger space and harvest long stems for bouquets, prioritize haageana cultivars.

Final Thoughts

Gomphrena is a true garden workhorse, offering hundreds of delightful button-shaped flowers with little to no maintenance. With all of the varieties available, there is sure to be a gomphrena right for your garden. If you want long stems for bouquets and arrangements, select from the QIS or Audray series. But if you prefer compact, dwarf plants, check out the Gnome or Buddy series of gomphrena. 

harvesting red rose hips


17 Roses with Beautiful Rosehips for All-Season Appeal

Roses grace the garden with gorgeous blooms, fragrance, and form. They also produce beautiful rosehips! Extend the interest in roses by fostering hips that enliven the fall and winter garden in all sizes, shapes, and colors. Rosehips are also a valuable food source for wildlife. Energize the cool season garden with roses that produce abundant hips. Join garden professional Katherine Rowe in exploring roses with beautiful hips for multi-season interest.

Close-up of a flowering Ranunculus plant in a small black pot on a wooden table, against a gray wall. The Ranunculus plant, commonly known as buttercup, presents a charming appearance with its vibrant, bowl-shaped flowers with gradient petals from soft pale pink to deep pink at the edges. The plant's foliage is deeply lobed and glossy green.


11 Tips for Growing Beautiful Ranunculus in Pots

Ranunculus are stunning members of the buttercup family. They are best known for their use as cut flowers due to their long, slender stems and colorful blooms. In this article, join gardening expert Melissa Strauss as she shares 11 tips for growing ranunculus flowers in pots!

ground cover lawn or grass. Close-up of ground cover lawn of Trifolium repens in the garden. Trifolium repens, commonly known as White Clover, is a low-growing perennial plant that features trifoliate leaves arranged alternately along creeping stems that root at the nodes. Each leaflet is heart-shaped and has a smooth texture with a pale green coloration. The plant produces round, white to pale pink, globe-like flower heads that sit atop slender stems.

Ground Cover

Are Ground Cover Lawns Better Than Grass?

Thinking about ditching the grass for a more earth-friendly alternative? Want to know a little more about the benefits and drawbacks of installing a ground-cover lawn? In this article, certified master gardener Liz Jaros looks at the pros and cons of replacing a traditional turf lawn with perennial plants and spotlights a few of your best options.

Earth Day gardening. Close-up of a woman's hand planting a young basil seedling in a peat pot into the soil. The gardener is wearing a blue shirt. The basil seedling has vibrant green leaves that are smooth, glossy, and tender. These leaves are oval-shaped with a pointed tip and serrated edges, arranged in pairs along the stem.

Gardening Tips

7 Eco-Friendly Garden Practices to Adopt for Earth Day

If you want to nourish Mother Nature while growing food as sustainably as possible, these 7 eco-friendly upgrades are perfect for Earth Day! Garden expert and former organic farmer Logan Hailey explains why and how these simple efforts can make a tremendous difference for local ecosystems, waterways, and waste reduction.

Close-up of olla clay jug on green grass in the garden. The olla clay jug is a traditional, handcrafted vessel made from terracotta or clay, distinguished by its bulbous body and narrow neck.

Gardening Tips

How and Why to Use an Olla to Water Your Garden

If you accidentally underwater or over-irrigate your plants, an olla makes it simple to water your garden with the perfect moisture balance. Former organic farmer and garden expert Logan Hailey digs into the benefits of an olla and how to use it for even, consistent watering.