Common Name: Red tithonia, Mexican sunflower
Mexican sunflower is an annual that grows to a height of about 1.5 meters and is a native of Central America. It has been naturalized in India and the plant is much sort after by gardeners for its beautiful crimson flowers. The young shoots of the plant have a velvety feel and is pubescent. The simple leaves are arranged in an alternate manner; leafs margin is crenate; the leaves are often seen as tri-lobed; the leaf stalk measure around 5.5 cm. The leaves are mostly ovate, the tip of the lobes are acuminate and the leaf base is attenuate. The flower heads are single; the flower stalk measure around 28 cm and is hallow. The flowers are large and measure around 7 cm across. The flower head is surrounded by 13-14 ray petals which are around 3 cm long and crimson red in color. The seeds are black flattened structures with an triangular shape.