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Mastering the Basics

How to care for your Foxgloves

Foxgloves are known for their tall, elegant appearance but knowing how to care for them isn’t as common. In this guide Will Williams, Soto Co-founder, creative director and five times RHS medal winner takes you through how to prune, when to prune and understanding biennial plants.


Foxgloves are striking and a common feature in both English country cottage gardens and show gardens. Loved for their height and attractiveness to bees and butterflies they are a stunning addition to any scheme. They do require some specific care, here we run through how best to maintain a garden with foxgloves.

White foxglove

When to prune your foxgloves

It is best to prune foxgloves after the first display of flowers. Not only does this help maintain a tidy looking garden, but it can also encourage a second seasonal flush.
A second flush means a new flower would appear on the stem that year.
To encourage a second flush, do this earlier rather than later in the season.

Maintaining a white foxglove

Should I cut all the flowers?

We suggest leaving about a quarter of the stems in the garden to dry out. Let the seed pod mature and when it is dry, give it a good shake. This should be done about a month after you prune the other foxglove flowers.
Not only does leaving this number neaten your garden, it helps to avoid an excess spread of seedlings in your border.
By shaking the dried out stem, you are encouraging seedlings to settle into your border ready for more Foxgloves to begin their growth cycle the following the season.

How to cut foxgloves

Cut back the flowering stem to just below the bottom flower, where there is new growth, to encourage a second seasonal flush. 

 Where to prune a foxglove

The where is the most important bit: 1cm – 2cm above the new growth. 

Prune foxglove 2 cm from the base of the stem

Think of this action as diverting energy away from the main road (old flowers) to new, quicker and more useful routes (new growth).

Foxglove after pruning

Foxgloves are biennial, what does that mean?

Biennial plants have a two year life cycle. The foxgloves that are available in the Soto edit are in their second season, therefore we recommend spreading foxglove seeds as suggested above. This way new plants will grow the following spring.


Foxgloves feature in the Soto White collection and are available to buy as individual plants. 

Please note, they are toxic if ingested. Wear gloves when handling.


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