Foxglove ‘Spanish Peaks’

 (Digitalis thapsi)

digitalis-thapsi-spanish-peaks-dbg-lah-002rWith one- to two-foot spikes of raspberry-pink flowers over a tidy mat of fuzzy foliage, perennial foxglove ‘Spanish Peaks’ isn’t your typical foxglove. Instead of the cool humidity of the British Isles, this hybrid is specifically recommended for Colorado gardens, doing well in our arid and unpredictable climate. As a result, it was named a Plant Select winner in 1999. The cultivar’s name reflects both the plant’s Spanish origins, and it’s suitability to Colorado, home of the Spanish Peaks.

Although attractive to bees and hummingbirds, ‘Spanish Peaks’ is usually disliked by rabbits and deer—probably due to its poisonous foliage. (The drug digitalis comes from plants in this genus.)

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american-flamingo_denverzoo_lah_4364When I was growing up, our elementary school classrooms were always decorated in seasonal colors… black and orange for October, red and green in December, and pink and red for February. Therefore, in honor of that long-lasting tradition, today’s post is about one of our most popular pink birds.

When we think of pink, the first bird that probably comes to mind is the flamingo. While there are six species of flamingo worldwide, and four in the Americas, only one is found wild in the United States—the American Flamingo. Even then, it takes a lot of effort and even more luck to actually see them in the US. Their normal range encompasses the Caribbean and the Galapagos (these two populations are divided into two subspecies), and only rarely are they seen near the southern tip of Florida. Continue reading “Flamingos”