Beautiful But Deadly: The Foxglove

Image credit Rosie Hopkins

It can grow up to 2m tall and is found in heathland, woodland edges and gardens. This pretty flower is also a valuable source of nectar for bees.  Woodland Trust

Because hairs on their speckled daybeds baffle the little bees,

foxgloves come out to advertise for rich bumbling hummers,

who crawl into their tunnels-of-delight with drunken ease

(see Darwin’s chapters on his foxglove summers)

plunging over heckles caked with sex-appealing stuff

to sip from every hooker its intoxicating liquor

and stop it propagating in a corner with itself.

From The Miracle of the Bees and the Foxgloves by Anne Stevenson

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1 reply »

  1. The Foxglove, poisonous it is true, but don’t forget that William Withering centuries ago described its use as DIGITALIS a drug for slowing the heart and treating heart failure

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