The Q&A Archives: Identifying Orange Annual

Question: I need help in identifying a flower I have seen growing on many Amish farms in Holmes County, Ohio. The flower in orange and resembles a cosmo but has several layers of petals. The leaves resemble a marigold leaf, but more slender. The plants are bushy and are approx. 3 foot tall. They appear to be grown from seed, and are typically found in a freestanding flower bed in the yard with other plants.
My guess is that this is some type of old fashion annual cosmo, but I have yet to find it in any seed catalogs. Thank you for your help.

Answer: Based on your description it is possible that what you saw is Cosmos "Bright Lights" which is semidouble and comes in yellow, gold, orange and scarlet and grows about three feet tall. Seed is available from Burpee (800-888-1447) and it is pictured in the spring 1999 catalog on page 20.

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