Common Names: Foxglove, fairy-bells, ladies’-thimble
Botanical Name: Digitalis
Native to Britain & Europe
Through the centuries, foxgloves have always been known as fairy flowers. They resemble fingers of a glove and tend to grow on woody slopes where foxes’ burrows are often found.
English foxes were brought to America in the eighteenth century by hunting club purists in Philadelphia. The foxglove plants were also imported to America in the 18th century.
Medicinal properties had been discovered in the plant.
Foxgloves are toxic and medicinal. Animals avoid them like the plague, especially deer and rabbits. In 1776, William Withering, an English physician, discovered that his patient was miraculously cured by taking an old cure of a garden plant called foxglove.
Foxglove aka digitalis is very toxic and fatal with an overdose. The leaves have glycosides called digitoxin, a stimulant that improves heart tone and rhythm, which then improves circulation. At one time, digitalis was universally accepted to treat heart disease. It’s also used in the treatment of glaucoma.
Keep foxglove away from pets