Botanical Name: Lobelia cardinalis
Plant Family: Campanulaceae (Bellflower Family)
Description: This 1-6 ft. perennial has showy, red flowers in 8 in., terminal spikes. Each flower has three spreading lower petals and two upper petals, all united into a tube at the base. Erect leafy stems, often in clusters, with racemes of flowers resembling flaming red spires. The lower portion of the erect stem is lined with lance-shaped leaves.
Growing Conditions: Sun/Part Shade/Shade. Very showy red blooms. Attractive at the edge of a woodland garden. The soil must be kept moist or wet at all times. It can be propagated by bending a stem down into the mud and fastening it with a rock or sticks.
Bloom Time: Late, Jul-Sep
Bloom Color: Red.
Benefit to pollinators/wildlife: Since most insects find it difficult to navigate the long tubular flowers, Cardinal Flower depends on hummingbirds, which feed on the nectar, for pollination.
Native Status: US native, PA native
Location in habitat: Pennsylvania Native Plant Society Demonstration Garden