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Get A Stunning Crimson Garden Display With Unmatched Cardinal Flowers

Get A Stunning Crimson Garden Display With Unmatched Cardinal Flowers

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I’ve seen countless gardens filled with spectacular blooming plants, but nothing catches my attention like flower beds with cardinal flowers.

Their crimson-red flower spikes are true showstoppers and can adorn your garden from spring through summer.

But beauty is just one of the reasons I decided to plant these bloomers. They’re native flowers, meaning they have multiple benefits for your outdoor space.

If you want magnificent cardinal flowers in your yard, there are only a few requirements you’ll need to meet – it’s as easy as pie!

Ready to transform your garden into a magical display of crimson blooms? With the tips you’re about to learn, you’re destined for success!

First, A Word About Cardinal Flowers

The term native plant means a lot to all my experienced fellow gardeners. If you’ve just started a garden and aren’t familiar with the term, let me break it down for you. 

Growing native plants means that you most likely already have the conditions they need in your garden. They won’t need a lot of water and won’t be fussy over the soil conditions.

Yes, a plant with low care requirements is everything a beginner gardener could wish for. The cardinal flower has all that, plus it’s not susceptible to pests and diseases.

But the story doesn’t end there. Cardinal flowers are true magnets for hummingbirds and other lovely creatures that bring numerous benefits to gardens; from pollination to getting rid of annoying pests.

I have to mention that cardinal flower species are classified as short-living perennials and they won’t last more than three years. 

Don’t worry, it’s not as bad as it seems; they’re self-seeding plants, meaning their clumps produce multiple seeds you can use the next season.

And This Is How I Grow Them

When I planted cardinal flowers for the first time, I was obsessed with providing them with all the perfect conditions. Well, it’s not that they didn’t appreciate it, but rather they would thrive even if I didn’t put so much effort into maintaining them.

But you know what they say, with age comes wisdom! Now I have thriving cardinal flower beds, and this is what you need to do to have the same!

Plant At The Right Time

For cardinal flowers, everything starts in spring. This season is perfect for planting, no matter if you choose seeds, bare root plants, or transplants.

I always grow mine from seeds because that’s the cheapest option and always gives great results.

If you want to give your cardinal flowers a good head start, you can start them indoors in early spring. Roots will be well-established and the plants won’t have trouble adapting to new conditions. 

Moisture-Retentive Soil Is A Game Changer

If you grow a lot of plants, I’m sure you know by now that most of them aren’t fans of compact soils. 

Well, that’s not really the case with cardinal flowers. They’ll only produce an abundance of blossoms if their soil is consistently moist.

Dry soil will significantly affect the blooming and overall health of these splendid bloomers.

My soil was pretty loose and the only thing I did was add a layer of mulch. It retains moisture perfectly and you can get it at a pretty low price from Home Depot.

Partial Shade Works Better Than Full Sun

You would think a prolific bloomer such as the cardinal flower would need a lot of sun to thrive. Well, surprise, surprise! These perennials grow best if provided with a spot with partial shade.

I found a spot in my garden that receives full sun in the morning and partial shade in the afternoon. It works perfectly!

Of course, stay away from shady corners or you won’t see any blooms.

Cardinal Flowers Won’t Mind Wet Feet

One of the things cardinal flowers are famous for is their ability to withstand wet conditions.

These are actually one of the most common plants in rain gardens, and pools of standing water can’t destroy them.

If you live in an area with high humidity, you’re one lucky gardener! Cardinal flowers will absorb moisture from both soil and air, and they’ll flourish and reward you with a lot of crimson blooms.

Your goal is to water your cardinal flowers when they’re young. As soon as they’re well-established, they won’t need your help.

Boost The Nutrient Levels For More Blooms

Whoever says cardinal flowers need fertilizing is wrong! I added fertilizer twice and didn’t notice any difference.

All you need is to add some organic matter once a year. I do it in late winter to help my cardinal flowers wake up from dormancy and start growing!

Don’t Forget To Deadhead!

We all enjoy keeping our gardens neat and tidy, right? Deadheading your cardinal flowers will definitely help you get there.

Simply remove all the spent blossoms throughout the season and you’re good to go. Be careful not to remove all the flower stalks because you’ll need them for seeds.

I typically leave two flower stalks and they give me enough seeds for next season.

And our journey ends here! Keeping your cardinal flowers happy and healthy has never been easier and all you need to do is follow our tried-and-true tips!