Digitalis thapsi

Spanish Foxglove

This plant is not currently for sale. This is an archive page preserved for informational use.

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Item #: 3573

Zones: 4a to 8a

Dormancy: Evergreen

Height: 15" tall

Culture: Sun to Part Sun

Origin: Spain

Pot Size: 3.5" pot (24 fl. oz/0.7 L)

This little known foxglove from Spain makes a basal rosette of fuzzy foliage, topped in early summer with 15" branched spikes of rosy bells...a real sweetie!

Digitalis thapsi resembles its close cousin the common foxglove, Digitalis purpurea, with similar purple-pink flowers but differs in that Digitalis thapsi bloom spikes are about 2' tall whereas Digitalis purpurea rises to a height of 4 to 6'. Perhaps most importantly Digitalis thapsi is perennial whereas Digitalis purpurea is a true biennial, or in modern forms an annual. Digitalis thapsi manages to bloom every year while in this area, Digitalis purpurea is often destroyed by pests just before they should be at their floral peak. Digitalis thapsi is a superb perennial plant that can be counted on for a glorious floral show each spring.


Removing spent flower stalks is about the only major maintenance that this plant needs. They can be removed as soon as flowering is done or after the seed is mature (the capsules will split open at maturity) if seed is desired. New plants are easily started from seed and it is useful to add new plants as back ups if existing plants die of old age. The seed is dust fine so surface sow it. Plants will put up new growth after flowering and this basal foliage will persist until flowering next spring.

Growing Conditions:

Digitalis thapsi will thrive in all-day, full sun and tolerate hot dry conditions. It will perform well with less sun and moister but not wet conditions.

Garden Value:

Digitalis thapsi will give the gardener the floral display of the common foxglove, Digitalis purpurea, where the common foxglove does not succeed; and it is in bloom for at least a month in mid-spring. Its bloom period is additionally valuable coming in the lull between spring's peak bloom and summer blooming perennials.

Natural Impact:

This is very showy in bloom and blooms at a very welcome time in the garden.