Crossandra Salisb.

Firecracker Flower

Greek crossoi — fringe, aner — male, referring to the fringed stamens.

Evergreen shrubs or subshrubs. Leaves usually entire and arranged more or less in whorls. Flower clusters terminal or axillary, forming 4-sided spikes, the bracts long and overlapping. Sepal lobes 5, unequal. Flower tube narrow and split almost to the base, the lobes spreading widely. Stamens 4. Ovary with 2 chambers, each with 2 ovules. Fruit a capsule containing flattened seeds that are covered with hair or scales and sticky when wet.

Grown for the brightly coloured flowers, outdoors in subtropical areas but as indoor plants in cooler regions.


Leaves more or less in whorls; flowers forming 4-sided spikes; fertile stamens 4; flower tube exceptionally long.

About 52 species from tropical Africa and Madagascar with 1 species also to Arabia and India .

Source: Spencer, R. (2002). Acanthaceae. In: Spencer, R.. Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 4. Flowering plants. Dicotyledons. Part 3. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.

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kingdom Plantae
phylum   Tracheophyta
class    Magnoliopsida
superorder     Asteranae
order      Lamiales
family       Acanthaceae
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