Flowers That Look Like Coral

Have you ever dreamt about transforming your ordinary gardening bed into an extraordinary underwater-themed wonderland? With textured blooms and vibrant colors, these flowers that look like coral will transform you into a breathtaking realm where imagination takes flight. While these gorgeous blooms may not be the exact replicas of corals, they’re still blessed with intricate structures and unique petal formations that resemble the shapes and patterns found in the deep sea. So without further ado, let’s dive in!

10 Coral Looking Flower To Illuminate Your Garden

Crested Cock’s Comb (Celosia cristata)

Crested Cock’s Comb flower look like coral

Gardening Zones: 2 to 11

Soil Type: Fertile, well-aerated

Watering: Regularly watered, slightly dry

Size: 1 to 1.5 feet (30 to 45 centimeters) tall

When we talk about coral doppelgangers in the world of plants, crested cock’s comb reign as the number one. Yes, this sun and partial shade-loving plant share an eerily similar appearance to their marine cousins, the popular brain coral (Diploria labyrinthiformis). Besides being able to successfully grow in a broad range of zones, these native to Africa and India flowers that look like brain coral can also withstand dry conditions and survive with minimal watering. 

Sea Lavender (Limonium)

Sea Lavender (Limonium) costal flowering plant that look like sea corals

Gardening Zones: 4 to 9

Soil Type: Acid, fast-draining

Watering: Regular watering

Size: 1 to 2 feet (30 to 60 centimeters) tall

These flowers that look like coral have a long-lasting blooming season and umbel-like bloom shape that resembles various coral species. Sea lavender is also well-adapted to coastal environments, and in the wild, they’re often found in marshes, dunes, and other coastal areas. The unique natural habitat of this sun-loving flowering perennial makes it tolerates a high level of salt in both water and soil.

Sugarbushes (Protea)

Sugarbushes (Protea) flowers that look like corals

Gardening Zones: 8 to 11

Soil Type: Sandy soil

Watering: Adequate watering

Size: 1.3 to 2 feet (40 to 60 centimeters) tall or more

The cheerful bright coral reef gets their long-lost land cousin, and yes, that’s sugarbushes. These South-African native flowers that look like coral were named after the Greek God, Proteus, due to their unique spiky and hairy appearance and a wide range of sizes and colors. Want something more interesting? Sugarbushes have been recorded as one of the oldest flowering plants, with fossil records dating back over 90 million years ago!

Sea Holly (Eryngium planum)

Flowers That Look Like Coral

Gardening Zones: 5 to 9

Soil Type: Moderate organic-rich soil, quick-drying

Watering: Consistent watering

Size: 1 to 2.5 feet (30 to 76 centimeters) tall

The next flowering plant that mirrors the appearance of a sun coral polyp is the sea holly. This low-maintenance sun-loving perennial is best known for its striking look, with steel blue or metallic blue petals that are surrounded by a crown of spiky silverish-blue bracts. Sea holly has a deep taproot system that allows it to access water deep within the soil and thus, making it relatively drought-tolerance once it matures.

Crested Euphorbia (Euphorbia lactea ‘Cristata’

Crested Euphorbia, coral look alike plant flower

Gardening Zones: 9 to 11

Soil Type: Well-draining soil

Watering: Balanced watering

Size: 1 to 2 feet (30 to 60 centimeters) tall

The good thing about growing this coral-looking flowering succulent is that you don’t need to do regular pruning to maintain its shape. Identical to its succulent counterparts, crested euphorbia is also known as a hassle-free plant and thrives well under bright, direct sunlight but tolerates partial shades as well. However, it’s worth noting that this plant is mildly poisonous, as it produces milky-white sap that contains latex.

Crinkle-Leaf Plant (Adromischus cristatus)

Crinkle-Leaf Plant (Adromischus cristatus)

Gardening Zones: 9 to 11

Soil Type: Sandy soil, quick-draining

Watering: Regularly watered

Size: 1 to 1.5 feet (30 to 60 centimeters) tall

We got another coral-looking succulent for all the stress-free plant lovers. As the name indicates, the crinkle-leaf plant is notable for its fleshy, thick, and wrinkled foliage that can go for an extended period without water. This plant produces tiny, star-shaped white flowers that usually bloom during early or late spring. In terms of growth rate, crinkle-leaf plants may not be suitable for you if you’re looking for a fast-growing succulent, as they would take more time to reach their fully-mature stage.

Coral Aloe (Aloe striata)

Coral Aloe (Aloe striata) plant look like corals

Gardening Zones: 9 to 11

Soil Type: Loamy, porous soil

Watering: Adequate watering

Size: 1.5 feet (45 centimeters) tall

These beautiful South-African endemic flowers that look like coral produce clusters of honeysuckle-like blooms that are a tasty snack for hummingbirds. Thanks to its compact size, coral aloe would be the perfect fit for plant lovers who are limited in space, as they’re tolerable to grow in small areas like containers and pots. Coral aloe is also well-adapted to rocky and dry coastal areas, which resulted in its tolerance to heat and drought.

Flowering Kale (Brassica oleracea var acephala)

Flowering Kale (Brassica oleracea var acephala)

Gardening Zones: 7 to 11

Soil Type: Slightly acidic, permeable, nutrient-dense

Watering: Regular and adequate watering

Size: 1.5 feet (45 centimeters) tall

This lettuce coral-looking flower belongs to the same family as the regular cabbage and broccoli, but flowering kale is primarily grown for its ornamental value rather than for consumption. Although can be planted through zones 11, flowering kale prefers mild temperatures and is also quite cold tolerant. Flowering kale is also an eco-friendly plant as they’re non-invasive and would not pose a threat to native ecosystems.

Coral Bells (Heuchera)

Coral Bells (Heuchera)

Gardening Zones: 4 to 9

Soil Type: Slightly acidic to neutral, fertile, porous

Watering: Consistent watering

Size: 1.6 feet (50 centimeters) tall

One of the standout features of coral bells is their colorful and vibrant foliage, with clusters of stalk-type, snapdragon-like flowers. These perennial, shade-tolerant flowers that look like coral are also often considered deer and rabbit-resistant, thanks to their fuzzy and bitter-taste foliage. Their snapdragon-like flowers usually bloom at the start of late spring through the end of summer.

Crinum Lily (Crinum asiaticum)

Crinum Lily (Crinum asiaticum) resembles sea-anemone

Gardening Zones: 9 to 11

Soil Type: Compost-enriched, well-aerated, moist

Watering: Consistent watering

Size: 3 to 6 feet tall (90 to 182 centimeters) tall

Last but certainly not least, these tropical and somewhat fragrant flowers that look like coral are also favored for their resemblance to sea anemones–thanks to their elongated petals. As a native to tropical and subtropical regions, crinum lily tends to perform best in warmer areas with consistent moisture, and would not mind getting either full shade or partial shade.

Are Coral-Structured Flowers Attractive to Pollinators?

The answer is yes and no. While some flowers that look like coral such as coral bells, sea holly, and sea lavender are known for being tasty snacks for pollinators, not all coral-look-alike flowers are attractive enough for our winged friends. It all depends on the presence of pollen and nectar, including the color, shape, and even the scent of the flowering plant itself. Nonetheless, being a pollinator magnet or not, flowers that look like coral are surely enough to grab anyone’s attention!

Are There Any Medicinal Uses For These Coral Looking Flowers?

Yes, there are recorded medicinal uses for some of these coral botany doppelgangers, including anti-inflammatory agents in sea lavenders, anti-oxidant effects in sugarbushes, potential diuretic in sea holly, and skin irritation as well as wound healing properties in coral aloe. But as the wise man says, it’s better to not consume any of these plants without professional guidance to prevent unwanted outcomes.

From the Sea to Your Garden: Captivating Flowers That Look Like Brain Coral

To wrap things up, Mother Nature’s creativity has no boundaries, as evidenced by these flowers that look like coral. Whether adorning coastal landscapes or adding a touch of marine beauty to your scenery, these flowers are definitely worth growing!

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