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Family Amaranthaceae, which contains about 60 genera and more than 800 species of herbaceous plants and a few shrubs, trees, and vines, native to tropical America and Africa. Globe amaranth (Gomphrena) and cockscomb (Celosia) are cultivated as ornamentals. The large genus Amaranthus contains the ornamentals love-lies-bleeding (A. caudatus) and Joseph's-coat (A. tricolor), as well as many weedy plants known as pigweed, especially A. retroflexus. Some Amaranthus species are tumbleweeds, and some are potential high-protein grain crops.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on amaranth family, visit Britannica.com.