Friday, November 30, 2012

Seeding foxgloves in the fall

During a hike this summer, I happened across a woodland clearing scattered with common foxglove (Digitalis purpurea). The bright fuchsia shafts towered above yellow-flowering field.  

What a great addition to the mellow yellow foxglove (Digitalis grandiflora) that happily inhabits a shady corner of the yard, I thought.  

In the past, I've tried, without success, to grow "Apricot Beauty," another Digitalis purpurea cultivar.  Perhaps this wild pink version will be more robust than its finicky cousin.

Late November is a good time for winter sowing in New England. Preparations are pretty basic: dig some composted cow manure into a bare patch next to the existing foxgloves, remove the glass jar of seeds from the refrigerator, and scatter seeds over the turned soil. The seeds are very tiny, so surface sowing seemed the best way to go.  

Hopefully, by next summer these garish-colored blooms will evoke memories of hikes in the mountains.  Or, at least, an excuse to relax in the garden with a glass of Riesling and wedge of Munster cheese.

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