Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Purple Amaranth, Red Amaranth, Prince's Feather, Mexican Grain Amaranth
Amaranthus cruentus 'Hopi Red Dye'

Family: Amaranthaceae
Genus: Amaranthus (am-uh-RANTH-us) (Info)
Species: cruentus (kroo-EN-tus) (Info)
Cultivar: Hopi Red Dye

3 vendors have this plant for sale.

23 members have or want this plant for trade.


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)
6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)
15-18 in. (38-45 cm)
18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

Not Applicable

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun


Bloom Color:
Magenta (Pink-Purple)
Fuchsia (Red-Purple)
Scarlet (Dark Red)
Dark Purple/Black
Maroon (Purple-Brown)

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall

Grown for foliage
Good Fall Color

Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Drought-tolerant; suitable for xeriscaping
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings
Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season
Flowers are good for cutting
Flowers are good for drying and preserving

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
From herbaceous stem cuttings
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; sow indoors before last frost
From seed; direct sow after last frost
From seed; germinate in a damp paper towel

Seed Collecting:
Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed
Collect seedhead/pod when flowers fade; allow to dry
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

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There are a total of 13 photos.
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6 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive rolltiderusty On Jul 27, 2011, rolltiderusty from Madison, AL wrote:

This plant is very pretty. It is also big. We haven't used it yet, but want to before the growing season is out. We are going to try making cornbread with its food coloring soon. Next year when it is younger we will try its greens. We did not know you could eat them until it was already mature. Does anyone have a little more info on bagging the seed pods? Should I wait until some obvious change in the plant? Is it time to do so yet? I really want to harvest the seed and plant many more of these next year. I might, between the three we have growing, be able to collect enough seeds to make a small loaf of that gluten free bread someone mentioned. This plant is very delicate when first growing but is red in color from the beginning. It seems failry hardy too. This summer has been super hot and the plants have looked healthier than everything in the garden this year. We used rabbit manure before planting and fish emulsion a couple of times in the first month. Other than that, no fertilizer or chemicals were added.

Positive garbanzito On Jun 22, 2010, garbanzito from Denver, CO (Zone 5a) wrote:

a real crowd pleaser; we've let this reseed randomly in our front yard the past few years; it seems to prefer dry gravel or bare dirt to grow seedlings

Positive CherokeeGreg On Sep 28, 2009, CherokeeGreg from Fresno, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

Great plant ! I did not plant it. The birds must have but thats ok. Its about 8 ft tall it started blooming at the end of September. Very nice plant.

Positive lehua_mc On Jul 3, 2009, lehua_mc from Portland, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:

*Unbelievable* color, I mean amazing. Dark burgundy with the light hitting it flat, but everything from florescent scarlet to pale tawny pinks run riot with this plant. I have this in a very hot exposed area, and it was grown tall and well behaved in its first few months. If aesthetics are your game, however, know that this plant gets leggier and lankier as it draws all the resources for the flowers. It's a challenge since they form such lovely rosettes of foliage early on, so I'm off to research low, late blooming plants to couple with it.

Positive artemiss On Oct 22, 2008, artemiss from Toledo, OH (Zone 5b) wrote:

A very impressive plant with large deep purple leaves and seedheads. Our grew with some tithonia in a neglected patch along the drive..and was easily 5'-6' by fall.

Positive Just_Grow_It On Oct 26, 2007, Just_Grow_It from Manassas, VA wrote:

It's will give you a nice splash of color in your flower garden.
It self re-seeds very easily.

Neutral NatureWalker On Feb 6, 2005, NatureWalker from New York & Terrell, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

An annual 4-7 ft. Bright-burgundy, with many branched stems and foliage; stately, erect, scarlet, flower plumes which stand out boldly, fresh or dried. Tolerates drought and most soils. An all purpose plant for flowers, grains, greens, dyes.

Used by the Hopi Indians as a ceremonial food dye to produce red cornbread.
As with all Grain Amaranths; young plants and young leaves make nutritious steamed greens. The immature flower bracts can be used as a flower dye and the edible black seeds can be ground to make a high protein, gluten-free flour.

Sow 8-10 seeds per foot. Plant before last frost or begin indoors, transplanting when growth has reached 4-8 inches. Full sun.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Madison, Alabama
Fresno, California
Richmond, California
Santa Clara, California
Denver, Colorado
Bridgeport, Connecticut
Valdosta, Georgia
Honolulu, Hawaii
Itasca, Illinois
Saint Paul, Minnesota
Sidney, Nebraska
Caldwell, New Jersey
Binghamton, New York
Toledo, Ohio
Portland, Oregon
Sweet Home, Oregon
Anton, Texas
Austin, Texas
Manassas, Virginia (2 reports)
Buckley, Washington
Kalama, Washington
North Bend, Washington
Spokane, Washington

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