They grow wild here on our West Coast.   Flinging themselves with outrageous abandon along side country roads and busy highways.  They cover hillsides with their brilliant colours.   Magnificent  spires of unbelievable beauty.  The fabulous.  The fantastic.   The outrageous too-good-to-be-true   Foxglove.

They grow tame in my garden.  No wild adventure for these towering, glorious foxgloves.  Imperiously they rule my spring garden.   High and haughty  above cornflowers and poppies.  Ignoring purple irises and  pansies.  Tall and slender they weave back and forth waltzing to the slightest breeze.

It’s early morning.  The dew caught like diamonds in spider webs woven across the lawn.  I have a deep bucket filled with warm water.   I cut  and strip the lower leave from the foxgloves,  and immediately dunk them in the bucket.    I let the foxgloves drowse away the morning hours in the cool, dark boot room.  The plants are slightly toxic so I wash my hands after handling them.

A  stunning  bouquet of foxgloves.   A spectacular statement of our connection to all things green and growing   This bringing the outdoors into your home is a simple pleasure.      Isn’t that what life should be about?

DIGITALIS PURPUREA (aka foxgloves)  have a vase life of up to 2 weeks.   Florists supply you with a sachet of plant food.  It is easy to make up your own plant food.

1 quart of water, 2 tablespoon vinegar, 1 teaspoon sugar and three or four drops of bleach.  Give it a stir before adding the flowers.  The bleach and vinegar reduce the chance of bacteria multiplying.  Bacteria cause stems to be become slimy and turn the water cloudy.   The sugar acts food for the flowers.




  1. Glorious! You are so lucky with your climate. I have tried and failed to cultivate foxgloves so many times. Yours are awe-inspiring. And thanks for the recipe. BTW–your living room and garden are stunning.

    • Thank you Gayle for you encouraging comments. I am so happy with my “wild” garden. It is untamed. Unstructured. And constantly surprising me with its gifts of beauty. The climate that allows foxglove to grow wild also gives us more gray skies and rain that sunshine. The yellow walls are my answer to the endless gloomy days. Cheers Virginia


  3. Oh, how wonderful to have such flowers growing with abandon in your garden! And you describe them gloriously. Your foxgloves are perfect for your charming living room. Thanks for the recipe for keeping flowers fresh. It was so nice to find a post from you, Virginia. I still have not gotten back into posting but life comes first but all ok here. May your summer be full of light, love and beauty! Cheers!

    • It always brings such happiness to my heart when I hear from you, Jo Nell. I appreciate that posting can be difficult at times. It has been an effort for me, also. In December I chose to take me off the various cancer inhibitor drugs I was on. The side effects were difficult and I chose a quality of life. Unfortunately one of the side effects was permanent and nowI work very hard at bringing joy and happiness into my life. You, Jo Nell are a joy. XXOO Virginia

  4. Jotting down your plant food recipe, Virginia. Thank you! Does your pitcher vase have a story? I also love your yellow walls. Pillows, too.
    Sending big hugs!
    (I’ve been studying the plant portrait painters at Versailles. The Hotel de Crillon now offers flower arrangement classes. Funny, eh? I LOVE your arrangement. Great shot.)

    • Dearest Theadora, Of course you would zero on on one of my obsessions. Pitchers and jugs. Any size. I found this wonderful (old?) pitcher at our local thrift shop. Two weeks later I found a second one. Two is always better than one. I counted my pitchers and jugs. I have 27. This madness must stop. The red and white toile pillows started life as curtains. Again a thrift shop purchase. What is your fav Versailles plant portrait?XXX OOOVirginia

  5. Fantastic!!! I adore Foxgloves.
    I always imagine sleek pretty foxes running around with little gloves on their paws. These gloves are the color of Foxgloves.
    Your romantic descriptions of nature’s beauty defy the arbitrary ideas of modernity, with a vase of flowers on the coffee table … or wherever.
    Thank you, Virginia! xoxoxo

  6. The old pitcher seems very fitting for your beautiful foxglove. I can just imagine how wonderful it is to see fields of them all in bloom. When we lived in New England, there was fields of wild lupines. Thank you for your tip on keeping flowers fresh.

    • Lupines, yes oh yes. One’s heart stops at the very thought of a field of wild lupines. I have grown them with great success, and then poor lupines, I forgot about them. Karen you have reminded me to plant them next spring. Cheers Virginia

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s