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Cardinal Flower

Another Southeastern native, cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis), grows best in moderately moist to wet, organically rich soils. Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University

Another Southeastern native, cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis), grows best in moderately moist to wet, organically rich soils.
Barbara H. Smith, ©2019 HGIC, Clemson University

Want to attract butterflies and hummingbirds to your shady garden, and you have too many rabbit or deer visitors? Planting cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis) is your answer. A Southeastern native perennial, the cardinal flower grows best in moderately moist to wet, organically rich soils. It’s also an excellent addition to a rain garden or near partially shady ponds or streams. This beauty will grow 2 to 4 feet tall and 1 to 2 feet wide, and the scarlet-red flowers bloom from July to September. Cardinal flower makes a great addition to a garden setting where rabbits and deer are frequent dinner guests, but the flowers readily attract butterflies and hummingbirds.

For more information on growing perennials, please see HGIC 1153, Growing Perennials.

If this document didn’t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at hgic@clemson.edu or 1-888-656-9988.

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