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Foxglove help required

  • Foxglove help required

I have a number of foxgloves that have popped up at the front of my borders but they looked so beautiful that I left them in place. I'd like to see them in my garden again but preferably in a more appropriate place. i know they are biennial but Id like to collect the seed rather than let them self seed. What is the best time to do this?

Comments (1)

  1. Grower

    Rachel the Gardener

    Hi Sharron, you'll know when they are setting seed because the lower flowers will turn into brown knobbles, and if you shake the spike gently, a rain of really fine light brown dust will be released. These are the seeds, so just hold a paper envelope under the spike and catch as much of it as you want.

    They do this in succession - the lowest flowers will be forming seed while the ones at the top of the spike will be still flowering, or even still in bud. So it's quite hard to prevent them from self-seeding, but easy to collect a massive amount of seed.

    Another thing to do is to look around the base of the flowering plants, to see if there are any small non-flowering ones: these will be seed that germinated this year, as opposed to the flowering ones which germinated last year and lurked unseen towards the front of your border through last season. Dig up any of these small plants and pop them in elsewhere in the garden: with luck, they will survive the move and will flower next year.

    You can also pot up some of those small non-flowering ones if you like: keep them somewhere out of the way and if they get through the winter, you will be able to plant them out next year, into their flowering positions.

    And of course you can scatter some of that seed in the flowering position as well - this should ensure that you have flowers every year thereafter.

    Hope this helps!

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