Red Cardinal Flower – Lobelia cardinalis
The Red Cardinal Flower is truly a jewel among perennials. Known for its royal stature and bright red blooms, this American favorite adds dazzling color to any setting. Hardy from zones three through nine, Red Cardinal Flowers produce straight stalks that will grow to heights of two to four feet. Each stalk features a one to two foot spread of alternating deep green leaves leading to a single crown of trumpet–shaped flowers that will bloom from the middle of summer to the start of fall. Insects find the trumpet shape of the blossoms challenging, but hummingbirds find it enchanting, making it an excellent choice to anchor a hummingbird garden. Red Cardinal Flowers are easy to grow in any moist fertile soil. They appreciate warmth and perform best in at least partial sun. Planting them about a foot apart will create the appearance of thick foliage while conserving moisture. These hardy flowers are tolerant to poor drainage, making them ideal for naturalizing spaces that are too wet for most other uses. A bank of these pest-resistant, low-maintenance plants set by a pond or bog will add spectacular visual appeal to the landscape. Although Red Cardinal Flowers are not true perennials, they function as such by consistently self-sowing in the same area, guaranteeing that tough-to-plant spaces will remain full and lovely. A formal favorite, these flowers respond well to cultivation and provide the height and striking bold color needed to bring well-deserved attention to prized gardens. Landscapers use scent-free Red Cardinal Flowers to create borders or natural fences that add vertical interest to walkways and entrances. Just a few hand-gathered stalks of these stunning flowers add sophisticated beauty to any entertainment setting. Whether destined to create formal drama or enhance countryside chic, Red Cardinal Flowers will continue to prove why they are every gardener’s delight.