Mullein Foxglove (Digitalis Thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’)

Plant: Table of Contents

Mullein Foxglove (Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’): A Comprehensive Guide

Mullein foxglove (Digitalis thapsi), particularly the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, is a fascinating plant renowned for its unique foliage and charming flowers. This stunning perennial has captured the attention of gardening enthusiasts and plant aficionados alike. In this extensive guide, we will delve into every aspect of the mullein foxglove, including its culture, uses, maintenance, and much more. Whether you are a seasoned gardener or a novice, this comprehensive resource will provide you with all the information you need to grow and care for this remarkable plant.

What is Mullein Foxglove (Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’)?

Mullein foxglove, scientifically known as Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks,’ is a member of the Plantaginaceae family and is native to the Iberian Peninsula. It is specifically acclaimed for its distinctive foliage and exquisite flowers. This perennial plant is characterized by its unique characteristics and has gained popularity for its ornamental value, landscaping uses, and potential medicinal properties.

Key Takeaways

Before delving into the specifics of mullein foxglove, it is essential to gain an understanding of the key takeaways associated with this plant. Let’s explore the critical aspects and attributes of Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ that will be discussed in this guide.

  1. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’: Understanding the species and its unique variety.
  2. Mullein Foxglove Plant: Exploring the characteristics and distinctive features.
  3. Spanish Peaks Mullein: Understanding the native habitat and growing conditions.
  4. Digitalis thapsi Varieties: Exploring the various cultivars and popular options.
  5. Foxglove Flower: Understanding the structure, color variations, and flowering period.
  6. Mullein Flower: Examining the unique attributes and visual appeal of the flowers.
  7. Digitalis thapsi Characteristics: Detailed insights into the foliage, growth pattern, and overall appearance.
  8. Spanish Peaks Plant Care: Understanding the essential maintenance and care requirements.
  9. Mullein Foxglove Growing Tips: Practical tips for successfully cultivating this plant.
  10. Digitalis thapsi Cultivars: Exploring the range of cultivars available and their distinctive traits.
  11. Foxglove Plant Species: Understanding its taxonomical classification and related species.
  12. Mullein Foxglove Benefits: Discovering the potential uses and benefits of this plant.
  13. Spanish Peaks Garden Plant: Exploring its role in garden landscapes and design.
  14. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Care: Detailed care instructions and best practices.
  15. Foxglove Plant Family: Understanding its familial relations and plant family characteristics.
  16. Mullein Foxglove Uses: Exploring its traditional, ornamental, and medicinal uses.
  17. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Facts: Interesting and lesser-known facts about this plant.
  18. Spanish Peaks Perennial Plant: Understanding its lifecycle, perennial characteristics, and sustainability.
  19. Mullein Foxglove Medicinal Properties: Exploring its potential medicinal uses and historical significance.
  20. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Foliage: Detailed insights into the foliage structure and leaf arrangements.
  21. Foxglove Planting Guide: Practical guidelines for successfully planting this species.
  22. Mullein Foxglove Natural Habitat: Understanding its native environment and ecological preferences.
  23. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Flowering Period: Exploring the timing and duration of its flowering.
  24. Spanish Peaks Landscape Plant: Understanding its role in landscaping and horticultural applications.
  25. Mullein Foxglove Seeds: Insights into seed propagation and cultivation.
  26. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Maintenance: Essential maintenance practices and routine care.
  27. Foxglove Plant Symbolism: Exploring any symbolic connotations associated with this plant.
  28. Mullein Foxglove Herbal Remedy: Understanding its potential role in traditional herbal medicine.
  29. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Propagation: Detailed insights into propagation techniques and practices.
  30. Spanish Peaks Wildlife Plant: Understanding its ecological importance and role in supporting wildlife.
  31. Mullein Foxglove Garden Design: Exploring its role in garden aesthetics and design principles.
  32. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Soil Requirements: Understanding its soil preferences and requirements.
  33. Foxglove Plant Care Tips: Practical tips and recommendations for successful care.
  34. Mullein Foxglove Pollination: Insights into its pollination mechanisms and relationship with pollinators.
  35. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Cultivation: Detailed insights into successful cultivation and growth practices.
  36. Spanish Peaks Drought-Tolerant Plant: Understanding its resilience to drought conditions.
  37. Mullein Foxglove Leaf Arrangement: Exploring the unique leaf patterns and arrangements.
  38. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Flower Shape: Understanding the visual and structural attributes of its flowers.
  39. Foxglove Plant Poisonous or Not: Understanding any toxicological aspects associated with this plant.
  40. Mullein Foxglove Landscape Plant: Understanding its role and value as a landscaping feature.
  41. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Sun Exposure: Understanding its sunlight requirements and preferences.
  42. Spanish Peaks Plant Borders: Exploring its use in border planting and defining garden spaces.
  43. Mullein Foxglove Natural Remedies: Exploring traditional uses and herbal remedies associated with this plant.
  44. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Garden Uses: Understanding its role and value in gardens and landscapes.
  45. Foxglove Plant Folklore: Exploring any cultural or historical folklore related to this plant.
  46. Mullein Foxglove Propagation Techniques: Practical techniques and methods for successful propagation.
  47. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Plant Profile: A comprehensive overview and summary of the plant’s characteristics.
  48. Spanish Peaks Erosion Control Plant: Understanding its role in soil conservation and erosion control.
  49. Mullein Foxglove Wildlife Habitat: Exploring its relevance and importance as a wildlife habitat.
  50. Digitalis thapsi ‘Spanish Peaks’ Ornamental Value: Understanding its ornamental and aesthetic value in horticulture.

Now that we have established the scope of this guide, let’s delve into each aspect of mullein foxglove in detail, starting with its cultural significance and uses.


Understanding the cultural requirements of mullein foxglove is essential for successfully cultivating and maintaining this plant. This encompasses its native habitat, growing conditions, and overall environmental preferences.

Natural Habitat

Mullein foxglove, specifically the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, is native to the Iberian Peninsula, where it inhabits rocky outcrops, limestone cliffs, and dry, rocky slopes. This plant thrives in well-drained, alkaline soils and is typically found in Mediterranean climates characterized by hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters. The native habitat of the ‘Spanish Peaks’ mullein foxglove provides valuable insights into its cultural requirements and growing conditions.


The uses of mullein foxglove are diverse and multifaceted, ranging from ornamental landscaping to potential medicinal applications. Here are some of the key uses associated with this plant:

  • Ornamental Value: The ‘Spanish Peaks’ mullein foxglove is highly valued for its ornamental attributes, including its striking foliage and vibrant flowers. It is often used in garden borders, rock gardens, and naturalistic plantings to add visual interest and color.
  • Landscape Planting: Due to its distinctive appearance and resilience, mullein foxglove is often used in landscape designs to create naturalistic and visually appealing compositions.
  • Potential Medicinal Uses: While caution is advised due to its toxic properties, foxglove has historically been used for medicinal purposes, particularly in the treatment of heart conditions. However, it is essential to consult a healthcare professional before considering any medicinal use of this plant, as improper use can be harmful or even fatal.

Understanding the cultural significance and uses of mullein foxglove provides valuable insights into its overall value and role in horticulture.


Maintaining mullein foxglove, particularly the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, requires careful attention to its water, sunlight, soil, and other essential factors. Let’s explore the key maintenance requirements and tips for successfully caring for this plant.


Proper watering is crucial for the health and vitality of mullein foxglove. While it can tolerate drought conditions once established, consistent moisture is important during its initial growth and establishment phase. It is essential to provide well-drained soil to prevent waterlogging, which can be detrimental to this plant. To achieve optimal moisture levels, consider the following tips:

  • Establishment Phase: During the initial planting and establishment phase, provide regular watering, ensuring that the soil remains consistently moist but not waterlogged. This is particularly important during dry spells or periods of low rainfall.
  • Mature Plants: Once established, mullein foxglove can tolerate moderate drought conditions. However, it is advisable to monitor soil moisture and provide supplemental watering during prolonged dry periods to support healthy growth and flowering.

Understanding the specific water needs of mullein foxglove is essential for maintaining its health and vigor.


Mullein foxglove, including the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, thrives in partial to full sunlight. Adequate exposure to sunlight is essential for promoting robust growth and abundant flowering. Here are some essential considerations regarding sunlight requirements:

  • Optimal Sun Exposure: Choose a planting location that receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight per day. While mullein foxglove can tolerate partial shade, it will thrive and flower profusely in full sun conditions.
  • Protect from Intense Heat: In regions with hot summer temperatures, providing partial afternoon shade can help protect the plant from excessive heat stress.

Understanding the sunlight preferences of mullein foxglove is crucial for providing an optimal growing environment.


Fertilizing mullein foxglove should be approached with caution, as excessive nutrients can lead to lush foliage but may inhibit flowering. Here are some key considerations for fertilizing this plant:

  • Minimal Fertilization: Mullein foxglove, particularly the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, generally does not require heavy fertilization. A balanced, slow-release fertilizer applied in spring can provide the necessary nutrients for healthy growth without overstimulating vegetative development at the expense of flowering.
  • Organic Amendments: Consider incorporating organic matter, such as compost or well-rotted manure, into the soil before planting to enhance fertility and soil structure.

Understanding the appropriate fertilization approach for mullein foxglove is essential for promoting balanced growth and flowering.


The soil requirements of mullein foxglove, particularly the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, are closely linked to its native habitat and growing conditions. Here are the essential soil considerations for successfully cultivating this plant:

  • Well-Drained Soil: Mullein foxglove thrives in well-drained, slightly alkaline soils. Ensure that the planting site provides good drainage to prevent waterlogging, which can be detrimental to this plant.
  • Soil Preparation: Prior to planting, amend the soil with organic matter to improve its structure and fertility. This can enhance the overall growing conditions for mullein foxglove.

Understanding the soil preferences and preparation requirements for mullein foxglove is crucial for providing an optimal growing environment.


Pruning is an important aspect of maintaining the health and appearance of mullein foxglove. While this plant generally requires minimal pruning, removing spent flowers and any damaged or dead foliage can promote vigorous growth and potentially encourage a second flush of blooms. Here are some key pruning considerations for mullein foxglove:

  • Deadheading: Regularly deadhead the spent flowers to prevent seed formation and promote continuous blooming. This can also help redirect the plant’s energy into producing new blooms.
  • Minimal Pruning: Avoid extensive pruning of the foliage, as the distinctive rosette of leaves contributes to the ornamental value of mullein foxglove.

Understanding the appropriate pruning techniques for mullein foxglove is essential for promoting healthy growth and flowering.


Propagating mullein foxglove, particularly the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, can be achieved through various techniques, including seed sowing and division. Here are the key propagation methods and considerations for successfully propagating this plant:

Seed Sowing

Mullein foxglove can be propagated from seeds, which should be sown in a suitable growing medium and provided with the right environmental conditions for germination. Here are the essential steps for propagating mullein foxglove from seeds:

  1. Seed Collection: Collect mature seeds from the plants when the seed capsules turn brown and start to split open.
  2. Sowing Depth: Sow the seeds at a shallow depth, pressing them gently into the soil surface to ensure good seed-to-soil contact.
  3. Germination Conditions: Provide consistent moisture and warmth to encourage germination. A warm, sunny location or a germination tray in a greenhouse can provide the ideal conditions for seedling development.
  4. Transplanting: Once the seedlings have developed several true leaves, they can be carefully transplanted into individual pots or directly into the garden.

Understanding the seed sowing process and environmental requirements is essential for successful propagation of mullein foxglove.


Mullein foxglove can also be propagated through division, particularly if the plant has developed multiple crowns or offsets. Here are the key steps for dividing mullein foxglove plants:

  1. Timing: Division is best carried out in early spring or early autumn to coincide with the plant’s active growth periods.
  2. Digging and Dividing: Carefully lift the plant from the soil using a garden fork, being mindful of the root structure. Gently tease apart the root mass and separate the individual crowns or offsets.
  3. Replanting: Replant the divided sections in prepared soil, ensuring that each division has a sufficient root system to support its growth.

Understanding the division process and proper timing is essential for successful propagation of mullein foxglove.

Container Popularity

Mullein foxglove, particularly the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, is well-suited for container cultivation, making it a popular choice for gardeners with limited space or those looking to showcase this plant on patios, balconies, or decks. The striking foliage and elegant vertical flower spikes of mullein foxglove add visual appeal to container gardens and can be combined with other complementary plants to create stunning displays.

Container Common Diseases

While mullein foxglove, including the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, is generally resistant to many diseases, it is susceptible to certain common issues that can affect its health and appearance. Understanding these potential diseases and their management is crucial for maintaining the vitality of this plant.

Disease Diagnosis

Mullein foxglove may be susceptible to certain fungal diseases, including powdery mildew and leaf spot. Here are the key symptoms and diagnostic indicators for these common diseases:

  1. Powdery Mildew: This fungal disease is characterized by a white, powdery coating on the foliage, which can inhibit photosynthesis and weaken the plant. Adequate air circulation and proper watering practices can help prevent powdery mildew.
  2. Leaf Spot: Leaf spot diseases can cause dark, round or irregular lesions on the foliage, often leading to premature leaf drop. Proper sanitation and the removal of affected plant material can help manage leaf spot diseases.

Understanding the symptoms and diagnostic indicators of common diseases is essential for timely intervention and effective management.

Common Pests

Mullein foxglove, including the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, can attract certain pests that may pose a threat to its health and vitality. Here are the common pests that may affect this plant:

  • Aphids: These small, sap-sucking insects can distort new growth and excrete honeydew, leading to the development of sooty mold. Insecticidal soap or horticultural oil can be effective for controlling aphid populations.
  • Snails and Slugs: These mollusks can feed on the foliage of mullein foxglove, causing unsightly damage. Physical barriers, such as copper tape or diatomaceous earth, can be used to protect the plants from snails and slugs.

Understanding the potential pests and their management is essential for protecting mullein foxglove from damage and stress.

Botanist’s Tips

As a plant scientist with a special interest in mullein foxglove, here are some key tips and recommendations for successfully cultivating and caring for this remarkable plant:

  • Provide Adequate Drainage: Ensure that the planting site or container provides good drainage to prevent waterlogged soil, which can lead to root rot and other issues.
  • Monitor Soil Moisture: Regularly monitor soil moisture levels, particularly during dry periods, and provide supplemental watering as needed to support healthy growth.
  • Prune Spent Flowers: Regularly deadhead the spent flowers to promote continual blooming and prevent seed formation, which can redirect the plant’s energy into new growth.

Implementing these botanist-recommended tips can contribute to the successful cultivation and maintenance of mullein foxglove.

Fun Facts

To further deepen your appreciation for mullein foxglove, here are some fun and intriguing facts about this remarkable plant:

  • Historical Medicinal Use: Foxglove has a fascinating history of medicinal use, particularly in the treatment of heart conditions. The discovery of the cardiac glycoside compounds in foxglove plants revolutionized the treatment of heart disease.
  • Ornamental Beauty: The graceful form and colorful blooms of mullein foxglove make it a captivating addition to garden landscapes and naturalistic plantings. Its elegant vertical spikes of flowers add vertical interest and visual appeal to any setting.
  • Wildlife Attraction: The flowers of mullein foxglove are a valuable nectar source for pollinators, including bees and butterflies, making it a beneficial addition to wildlife-friendly gardens and natural habitats.

These fun facts provide additional insights into the remarkable qualities and significance of mullein foxglove.

Links to External Resources

For additional information and resources on mullein foxglove, including the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, consider exploring the following links:

These resources offer valuable insights and detailed information on mullein foxglove, its cultivation, and its role in horticulture.

In conclusion, mullein foxglove, particularly the ‘Spanish Peaks’ variety, is a captivating and versatile plant that offers ornamental beauty, potential medicinal uses, and ecological benefits. Whether you are drawn to its striking foliage, elegant flowers, or potential landscape uses, mullein foxglove has much to offer to gardeners, plant enthusiasts, and nature lovers. By understanding its cultural requirements, maintenance practices, and unique attributes, you can cultivate and appreciate this remarkable plant in your own garden or landscape.

With its rich history, diverse uses, and impressive visual appeal, mullein foxglove continues to captivate and inspire, making it a cherished addition to any garden or botanical collection

Picture of Peter Taylors

Peter Taylors

Expert botanist who loves plants. His expertise spans taxonomy, plant ecology, and ethnobotany. An advocate for plant conservation, he mentors and educates future botanists, leaving a lasting impact on the field.