Everyday Gardeners

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In-Season Plants: Foxglove

One of my favorite colorful additions to a shade garden is the tall and funny-shaped foxglove. When I first started gardening, I was a little bummed that having a backyard full of trees meant that I would miss out on the colorful bursts of bright day lilies, poppies and coneflowers that would flourish in a sunny spot. I found a pleasant surprise this spring when the non-blooming foxglove I planted last summer shot quickly out of the ground in all its purple glory!

Up against a sea of fern and Solomon’s Seal greenery, this little flower has quickly provided great color inspiration for me to try to build on. I’m already planning where I’ll add another and what other vibrant shade-loving plants I can find. Astilbe, anyone?

My foxgloves are in rich, well drained soil with only dappled sunlight throughout the day. In my Atlanta, GA garden (Zone 7b-8a) they started blooming in late March and early April. They’re delicate but tough, I think, which is part of their charm. See more planting details on foxglove here.

Photos by Whitney of The Curtis Casa


9 Responses to “ In-Season Plants: Foxglove ”

  1. I like the surrounding, variegated plants around your foxglove. What are they?

  2. Hi Debbie! The variegated leaves you see to the left of my foxglove is Solomon’s Seal! We transplanted it from my mom’s garden, it’s a great shade plant and adds so much depth with it’s variegated leaves. I also have hydrangea and fern surrounding it. Thanks for reading!

  3. The variegated plants I see r hostas. Have never seen Solomon’s seal with variegated leaves. And their leaves aren’t as large.

  4. Is foxglove poisoneous ?

  5. Hey Sheri!
    The variegated leaves actually belong to Solomon’s seal. Here is a quick BHG link to learn more about the plant. It was actually voted perennial of the year this year!


    Thanks for your comment!
    Katie Ketelsen
    >>> Online Garden Editor for Better Homes and Gardens

  6. Yes Anne, unfortunately foxglove is poisonous if ingested. Which is why it makes such a great deer and rabbit resistant plant!

    Katie Ketelsen
    >>> Online Garden Editor for Better Homes and Gardens

  7. Thanks for the idea of the foxglove! I too have a very shady yard and while I love my hostas and ferns, I want more color too! I have hydrangeas, bleeding heart, and astilbe mixed in with the hosta and ferns and I have added color by potting annuals in unusual containers (impatiens in an old coffee pot hanging from a low limb, etc) but I would love to have more perennials. Great idea!

  8. Sheri, I used giant vargieted solomon’s seal in low urns (with ivy and white impatiens) at my daughter’s wedding. It was an outdoor, woodsy setting and they looked beautiful!

  9. Fox gloves really rock! They are loved by bees, and are magical.

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