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Chinese Foxgloves (Rehmannia elata)

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Rehmannia elata (Chinese Foxgloves)

Rehmannia elata (Chinese Foxgloves)

Photo Courtesy of Renees Garden (www.reneesgarden.com)

Overview:

The common name of perennial flower Rehmannia is Chinese Foxgloves, because the tubular flowers bear a resemblance to Digitalis. They do well in shade, even dry shade. And these foxgloves, although not as hardy as digitalis, are repeat blooming throughout the growing season.

Latin Name:

Rehmannia elata

Common Name(s): Chinese Foxgloves

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones:

USDA Zones: 7 - 11

Size:

24 - 36" H, 18 - 24" W

Exposure:

Bloom Period:

Repeat blooms spring through fall

Description:

Spikes of hanging bell-shaped, rose-pink blossoms poke up from scalloped, glossy green leaves. Unlike traditional foxgloves, the petals of the bell lip flare open and outward. The prolific blooms are long-lasting and will repeat bloom for 3-4 months. Spring planted seeds will generally not bloom the first year. Seed can be started in the fall.

Design Tips:

Rehmannia help to light up shade gardens and begin blooming as spring woodland flowers fade. They provide a nice accent to Hosta and the glossy leaves and nodding blossoms contrast well with Astilbe. Rehmannia also grow happily in containers, if given regular feedings to encourage blooms.

Suggested Varieties:

I’ve only seen the species offered. If you have a named variety, please tell us about it.

Cultural Growing Notes:

Chinese foxgloves grow best in light shade, but can handle full sun if there is sufficient water. They are more drought tolerant in the shade.

Maintenance: Plants should be deadheaded for continual bloom. A rich soil or monthly feedings will also help promote flowering.

Problems & Pests: Although Rehmannia is generally pest free, it can become invasive in certain areas, particularly when grown in moist, rich soil. If your plant starts to become aggressive, either cut back on food or water.

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