How to Winterize Foxglove, Rusty


Rusty foxglove has rusty red bell or thimble-shaped flowers. This variety of foxglove grows to a height of 4 to 6 feet. It can be grown in full sun to partial shade and is considered a biennial. If you allow the flower spikes to go to seed, it will seed itself in the fall. Foxglove is an easy-to-care-for and low-maintenance plant. If you live in a deer-populated area, you can plant foxglove without worrying that the deer will eat it as it is deer resistant. The leaves of the foxglove plant contain digitalis which is used in making a strong heart medication; the leaves are poisonous.

Step 1

Cut back the plants to 1 or 2 inches from the ground after the first hard frost. Alternately, leave some plants standing throughout the winter to add interest to the winter landscape. Cut them back in the spring.

Step 2

Add the dead plant material to your compost bin. Discard any diseased plant material.

Step 3

Add a layer of mulch to protect your foxglove plants from harsh winter temperatures and winds. Use leaves that are readily available in the fall, or use evergreen boughs or straw.

Things You'll Need

  • Hand pruning shears
  • Mulch


  • National Gardening Association
  • Natural Life Magazine
  • Old Fashioned Living
Keywords: foxglove rusty biennial, winterize frost hard freeze, cut back mulch winter season

About this Author

Paula M. Ezop’s inspirational column "Following the Spiritual Soul" appeared in "Oconee Today," a Scripps Howard publication. She has published her first book, "SPIRITUALITY for Mommies," and her children's chapter book, "The Adventures of Penelope Star," will be published by Wiggles Press. Ezop has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Northeastern Illinois University and has been writing for 10 years.