Look very closely and you might see some pretty little fairies dancing around these foxgloves here at Cranberry Cottage. This year these majestic, tall blooms also called Fairy Weed are everywhere in our garden. These are not plants for the faint~hearted as they seed each year where they want to go. Folklore says to pick the foxglove is to offend the fairies that live within the flowers and will bring bad luck, even death, to the picker and his family. We have decided that the fairies must know best and seeing how pretty they are looking...they do!
This year during the broadcast of the Chelsea Flower Show, I recall hearing Alan Titchmarsh something to the effect of not being able to imagine an English country garden without a foxglove. We have inherited them from the fairies themselves in ours and look how perfectly they are fitting themselves in with the other planting. In the Language of Flowers from Victorian times, a foxglove meant 'insincerity' which I find a harsh meaning for this flower. Luckily, a later version of the Language included the meaning 'a wish'.
I will leave you on this Sunday evening with a couple of poems celebrating the beauty of this most pretty flower...
"Through quaint obliquities I might pursue
These cravings; when the foxglove, one by one
Upwards through every stage of the tall stem
Had shed beside the public way its bells,
And stood of all dismantled, save the last
Left at the tappering ladder's top, that seemed
To bend as doth a slender blade of grass."
~~ William Wordsworth ~~
"Through the vales to my love!
Where the turf is so soft to the feet
And the thyme makes it sweet,
And the stately foxglove
Hangs silent its exquisite bells."
~~ Christina Rossetti ~~
"When "Landlords" turn the drunken Bee
Out the Foxglove's door
When Butterflies—renounce their "drams"
I shall but drink the more!"
~~ Emily Dickinson ~~