(Giant Red Cardinal Flower) Similar to the plumage of a Northern Cardinal, the long-blooming flowers of this Lobelia hybrid are startlingly red. The tubular blossoms have lips that flare at their openings into petals shaped like poinsettia bracts.
When in bloom, Giant Red Cardinal Flower doubles in height. It's spectacular cardinal red flower spikes make dramatic additions to cut flower arrangements.
The clumping foliage, which forms a mound, has lance-shaped, mid-green leaves with serrated edges. Remember that young children and pets should not chew on the leaves due to their alkaloids.
Although the origin of Lobelia hybrids can be difficult to nail down, a number of sources identify Giant Red as a cross between L. cardinalis, L. siphilitica and L. fulgens. The first two plants are native to the U.S. while L. fulgens comes from Mexico.
Butterflies, honeybees and hummingbirds all are drawn to Giant Red. The great news for gardeners who enjoy developing small wildlife habitat is that this plant is easy to cultivate and grows rapidly. Although it does fine with average watering based on local conditions, it loves wet feet. So it does well in and near ponds and boggy areas in full sun.
Plant Giant Red in containers, borders, native plant gardens and seasonal flower beds. It's especially ideal for woodland gardens.
(Monet Moment Cardinal Flower) What a great, long-blooming perennial! The bright pink flowers of Lobelia 'Monet Moment' are plentiful and attract lots of buzz from butterflies and hummingbirds.
The unusually shaped tubular flowers of Monet Moment Cardinal Flower are slit nearly to their base to form two lips. The bottom lip has three lobes; the top has two. The flower spikes are tipped with tiny, mid-green leaves and rise up vertically out of a a clumping, basal rosette of foliage.
This rewarding American native grows quickly, is easy to cultivate and tolerates both heat and cold. Although it does fine with average watering, it loves moisture and thrives in damp spots including locations near ponds and bogs.
Although it enjoys full sun, Monet Moment still blooms like crazy when planted in partial shade. Try it in patio containers, borders and seasonal flowerbeds. It's especially ideal for woodland and native plant gardens.
The genus name Lobelia honors Flemish botanist Matthias de L'Obel (1538-1616) whose work focused on medicinal plants. Historically, some Lobelias have been used to treat asthma, baldness, depression, syphilis and withdrawal from smoking. Research continues about medical use of the genus. Please remember that no herbal substance should be consumed before consulting a physician.
(Tangerine Ballet Hybrid Jame Sage) Soft pinkish-orange flowers with contrasting yellow eyes make this Jame Sage look as tasty as sorbet. Hardy to at least 10 degrees F, Tangerine Ballet is also heat tolerant, drought resistant and long blooming-- all marks of Salvias in the closely related Autumn and Mountain Sage group.
Jame Sage is a cross of Autumn Sage (Salvia greggii), Mountain Sage (Salvia microphylla) and, possibly, other Salvia species. Determining a Jame Sage's precise parentage can be complicated, because one or both of its Autumn/Mountain sage parents may also be hybrids. This hybrid-of-a-hybrid phenomenon may be the case for Tangerine Ballet, which is one of our taller Jame Sage varieties.
Native to Mexico and the American Southwest, Jame Sage occurs in areas where the closely related species of Autumn Sage and Mountain Sage meet, such as near the Village of Jame in Mexico's Sierra Madre Mountains.
Upright in form with leaves that closely resemble the tiny, smooth foliage of its Autumn Sage parent, Tangerine Ballet is perfect massed as a groundcover or in spots calling for small shrubbery, such as path edges. Jame Sage loves full sun, but tolerates a bit of shade.
Highly recommended by butterflies, honeybees, hummingbirds and gardeners!
Hummingbirds love Salvia (sage) nectar and are attracted to it by the bright colors of tubular sage blossoms. In particular, these little whirlybirds can easily spot flowers in the red spectrum, which is prevalent among sages. Here are some hummingbird gardening tips.
Fragrance as well as color attracts butterflies. However, they don't have noses. Instead, butterflies smell and taste with their antennas and feet. Here are some ways to attract them:
If you live in suburbs or rural areas where deer plunder gardens, Salvias (sages) can be part of your plan for discouraging these hungry visitors. Here are some tips.