AMARANTHUS, in botany, a genus of the Monoecia Pentandria class and der, of the Triandria Tryginia of Gmelin's Linn:tits; its characters are, that those species which have male flowers on the same plants with the females have a ca lyx, which is a five or three-leaved peri anthium, upright, coloured, and perma nent ; the leaflets lanceolate and acute ; no corolla ; the stamina have five or three capillary filaments, from upright, patu louts, of the length of the calyx, the an thers oblong and versatile : of those which have female flowers in the same receme with the males, the calyx is a perianthi urn the same with the former ; no corol la; the pistillum has an ovate germ, styles three, short and subulate ; stigmas sim plc and permanent ; the pericarpium is an ovate capsule, somewhat compressed, as is also the calyx on which it is placed, coloured, and of the same size, three. beaked, one-celled, cut open transverse ly; the seed is single, globular, com pressed, and large. There are 22 spe cies, of which we notice A. mclancolicus, two-coloured A. with glomerules, axilla TY, peduncled, roundish, and leaves ovate lanceolate, and coloured. This species varies in the colour of the leaves ; being in the open air of a dingy purple on their upper surface, and the younger ones green ; in a stove the whole plant is pur ple-coloured; but it is easily distinguish ed in all states by its colour, leaves, and the lateness of its flowering, after all the lathers are past: it is joined by La Marck with a tri-colour ; a native of Guiana and the East-Indies, and cultivated in 1731 by.Miller. The obscure ptuple and bright crimson of the leaves are so blend ed as to set off' each other, and, in the vigorons state of the plants, make a fine appearance. A. tri-color, three-colour ed A. with glonterules sessile, roundish ; stem clas pi ng, and leaves lanceolate-ovate, coloured. This has been long cultivated,
being in the garden of Gerard in 1596, for the beauty of its variegated leaves, in which the colours are elegantly mixed these, when the plants are vigorous, are large and closely set from the bottom to the top of the stalks, and the branches form a 'Kind of pyramid, and therefore there isnot a more handsome plant when in full lustre : a native of Guiana, Persia, Ceylon, China, Japan, the Society Isles, &c. A. lividus, livid A. These are the most worthy of a place in the pleasure garden ; but they are tender, and require attention. They are usually disposed in pots, with cocks-combs and other showy plants, for adorning court-yards, and the environs of the house. The seeds of these should be sown a moderate hot-bed, about the end of March ; and w hen the plants come up, they should have much air in mild weather. When they are fit for transplanting, they should be removed to another moderate hot-bed, and placed at six inches distance, watering and sha ding them till they. have taken new root ; afterwards they should have free air, and frequent but gentle waterings. In the be ginning ofJu ne they should be taken up, with large balls of earth to their roots, and planted either in pots or the borders of the pleasure-garden, shaded till they have taken root, and afterwards frequent ly watered in dry weather. The tree amaranth must be planted in a rich light soil, and if it be allowed room, and well watered in dry weather, it will g-row to a large size, and make a fine appearance. The other sorts are sufficiently hardy to bear the open air, and may be sown on a bed °flight earth, in the spring, and when the plants are fit to remove, transplanted into any part of the garden, where they will thrive, and produce plenty of seeds.