The cardinal wildflower is a native Wisconsin perennial. It consists of many bright red tubular flowers. The tubular flowers are arranged in an elongated cluster. Cardinal flowers also make excellent garden flowers in wet areas, the flowers attract hummingbirds, bees, and butterflies.
The wildflower is native to the Americas. One of the best native plants you can add to wetland properties to attract hummingbirds and the plant is deer resistant.
Seed is best planted in the late fall. Seeds should be sown on the top of the soil because it needs light to germinate.
For spring planting, mix the seed with moist sand and store it in the refrigerator for 60 days before planting.
To start indoors, sow the seed 6-8 weeks before the last frost of spring and keep the soil lightly moist until germination.
Transplant the seedlings as soon as they can safely be handled and there is no chance of frost.
Best planted in wetlands or edges of a water source, the plant needs constant moisture.
Three Interesting Facts About Cardinal Flowers
1.) The wildflower was that it was named after the bright red robes worn by Roman Catholic cardinals.
2.) Flowers are primarily pollinated by hummingbirds. Other insects find it difficult to navigate the long tubular flowers.
3.) The wildflower is becoming scarcer due to over picking in some areas.