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What Blooming? Foxgloves!

Mar

31

These lovely flowers have a background that is amusing, industrious, and sometimes dangerous.  The plant came by its name because of the location it grew and the myth it perpetuated.  Foxgloves were often found growing on wooden hillsides, that were popular locations for fox dens.  The myth around them states that foxes used the flowers as magical gloves to help them quietly raid the poultry yards and torment rural communities.

This was not, of course, their primary use.  The plant is one of the most poisonous plants to be used in general landscaping.  While quite lovely, it is not advisable to grow them in an area where children play unattended.  Like many other poisonous plants, Foxglove was used by early medical practitioners, and continues to me used in some heart medications.

Foxgloves are biennial plants, meaning that they will bloom for two years.  Though if properly maintained, they may last longer.  During the first year, you will get leaves in a rosette near the ground, and in the second year you will get a 2-5′ spike with many of tubular blooms.  Foxgloves grow best is partial shade, and well drained, acidic soil.  Because of their height, they work well toward the back of the planting area.  They are also excellent for attracting hummingbirds and butterflies, which are both beautiful and beneficial additions to any garden.

It is very important that you plant Foxgloves in a well drained area and space them properly.  They are susceptible to crown rot, powdery mildew disease, and leaf spots if they are not planted properly.

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