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Digitalis purpurea is often confused with:
Antirrhinum majus Antirrhinum majus
Native alternative(s) for Digitalis purpurea:
Lobelia siphilitica Lobelia siphilitica
Lupinus Lupinus spp.
Penstemon digitalis Penstemon digitalis
Plants that fill a similar niche:
Petunia x hybrida Petunia x hybrida
Salvia farinacea Salvia farinacea 'Victoria Blue'
Antirrhinum majus Antirrhinum majus

Digitalis purpurea

Common Name(s):

Phonetic Spelling
dij-ee-TAH-liss pur-PUR-ee-ah
This plant has high severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

Foxglove is a European import with tall, bold blooms in many colors. It prefers moist, well-drained soil high in organic matter that should not be allowed to dry out. Foxglove does best with afternoon shade. It is a biennial,  having only a rosette of leaves the first year. The second-year a tall spike appears with showy blooms on a densely packed one-side raceme. Deadhead after flowering to avoid excessive numbers of seedlings, but some flowers must go to seed to maintain a permanent planting as if they were perennials.

Use to add a vertical dimension to the perennial flower bed. They are attractive in front of walls and shrubs and planted in mass.

Family name previously Schrophulariaceae

Quick ID Hints:

  • Perennial herb with basal rosette of downy leaves
  • Terminal raceme of large pendulous flowers
  • Corolla tube inflated, funnel-form bell-shaped
  • Inner tube whitish with purplish edging & maculati

Erect perennial herb 2-5' tall.

Blooms late spring to early summer; utilized under trees, shady locations,woodlands, natural settings, borders; must water copiously in dry weather and during southern heat loads. Prefers partial shade, moist, well-drained, acidic soils with abundant humus; fungal diseases and aphids, Japanese beetles, and mealy bugs are problems.

'Excelsior Hybrids' - flowers borne around the rachis, available in pastel shades and maculation in tube fairly easy to view.

 

Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Foxy'
    hort-statured selection (2-3 feet in flower) that blooms reliably from seed the first year with white, cream and rose blooms.
  • 'Temple Bells'
    dwarf plants with spikes of yellow, tubular flowers marked with brown
Tags:
#purple#hummingbirds#white#butterflies#pink#sun#yellow#poisonous#partial shade#annual#summer#spring#biennial#perennial#wildlife plant#spotted#bumblebees#deer resistant#pollinator plant#fantz#nectar plant spring
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Foxy'
    hort-statured selection (2-3 feet in flower) that blooms reliably from seed the first year with white, cream and rose blooms.
  • 'Temple Bells'
    dwarf plants with spikes of yellow, tubular flowers marked with brown
Tags:
#purple#hummingbirds#white#butterflies#pink#sun#yellow#poisonous#partial shade#annual#summer#spring#biennial#perennial#wildlife plant#spotted#bumblebees#deer resistant#pollinator plant#fantz#nectar plant spring
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Digitalis
    Species:
    purpurea
    Family:
    Plantaginaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Was used to treat heart conditions, but is highly poisonous if used incorrectly.
    Life Cycle:
    Biennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Europe
    Wildlife Value:
    Nectar attracts bumblebees and hummingbirds.
    Particularly Resistant To (Insects/Diseases/Other Problems):
    Browsing by deer, contains a chemical that deer avoid.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 2 ft. 0 in. - 5 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 1 ft. 0 in. - 2 ft. 6 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Annual
    Perennial
    Poisonous
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Dense
    Erect
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Coarse
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    High Organic Matter
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9a, 9b
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Type:
    Capsule
    Fruit Description:
    Rounded fruit capsule which splits open at maturity to release the numerous small brown, ridged seeds.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Cream/Tan
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Summer
    Flower Shape:
    Funnel
    Tubular
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    Blooms grow on tall spikes as a 1-sided raceme with blooms closely grouped together. They are 2-3 inch long tubular flowers and come in multiple colors of white, pinks and purple with purple and white spots inside the petals. An elongate, terminal raceme, 1-2' long to sparcely branched, bracteate, with flowers subsecund, borne on one side, or borne around the rachis in some hybrids. Flowers are large, nodding, purple to pale pink or white, mauve or yellowish in some hybrids; corolla tube inflated, campanulate, 1.5-2" long, tube inside ciliate, usually heavily marked with white, edged darker purple maculation, lobes 4, upper lip shorter than lower lip.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Velvety
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Cuneate
    Lanceolate
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Crenate
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    The first year it forms a tight rosette of coarse leaves with prominent veins that are up to a foot long and covered with gray-white hairs on the upper surface and are wooly or hairy below. The clump remains low and close to the ground. In the second year, an upright flower stem with smaller leaves is produced from the center of the basal clump. Alternate, simple, ovate to lanceolate, rugose, acute, broad cuneate to subtorund, pubescent; basal leaves long petiolate, petiole and blade reducing upward on cauline leaves.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Surface:
    Hairy (pubescent)
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Rock Wall
    Vertical Spaces
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Cottage Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Small groups
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Rabbits
    Problems:
    Poisonous to Humans
    Problem for Children
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    High
    Poison Symptoms:
    Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, severe headache, irregular and slow pulse, tremors, unusual color visions, convulsions
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    cardiac glycosides
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Flowers
    Leaves
    Roots
    Stems