Digitalis Purpurea

The Common Foxglove


The common foxglove, also known as Digitalis purpurea, commonly referred to as the common foxglove, is quite an extraordinary plant. Not only is found commonly in gardens due to how easy it is to grow its beautiful flowers, it also has several other uses that have to do with health. Historically, the common foxglove was used for cleansing wounds, reducing swelling, treating ulcers, and dropsy (also known as edema).

 However, today it is more commonly used to help several people with heart problems stay alive. The plant contains a toxin called digitalis which stimulates cardiac muscles. It is usually used to treat congestive heart failure as well as congenital heart defects. The toxin somehow strengthens the contraction of cardiac muscles and slows down the pulsation rate of the heart. However, this plant might be very helpful to us, it can be very dangerous and harmful to us and other organisms as well. If not consumed in the right way, the common foxglove can be deadly, causing several side affects like sudden depression, irregular heartbeat, diarrhea, headache, nausea, and vomitting. As a result, the common foxglove is often referred to as Deadmen's Bells and Witch's Bells. To Learn more about the common foxglove check out the rest of my web page!      

This picture is courtesy of English Country Garden and Jenny Bailey
To learn more about the Digitalis purpurea go here Classification.