Native Plant of the Week

Common Name: Cardinal Flower

Scientific Name: Lobelia cardinalis


General Description: Clump-forming perennial that reaches 3-5 feet in height.  Stunning red flowers form along a terminal spike that is 8-12 inches long.  Dark green leaves provide the perfect backdrop to show off these beautiful flowers.

Habitat: Cardinal flower is commonly found near streams, ponds, and ditches because it absolutely requires moist to wet soil.  Cardinal flower can tolerate full shade to full sun.

Additional information: Cardinal flower is a magnet for hummingbirds.  The nectar in the long tubular flowers is not accessible to most pollinators; but readily available to hummingbirds which will visit the plants repeatedly every day the flowers are in bloom.  Cardinal flower can form dense colonies over time; but it is not an aggressive spreader.  In Richmond, it is best to plant cardinal flower in part to full shade to minimize supplemental watering. This is an ideal plant for that shady area with poor drainage or along a tree line.

You are welcome to visit the Native Plant of the Week 

at 4020 Dunston Avenue.  

The featured plant will be in the front yard 

and will be marked.

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