Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Indian Pink
Spigelia marilandica

Family: Loganiaceae
Genus: Spigelia (spy-GEEL-ee-ah) (Info)
Species: marilandica (mar-i-LAND-ih-ka) (Info)

12 vendors have this plant for sale.

78 members have or want this plant for trade.

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12-18 in. (30-45 cm)
18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:
Light Shade
Partial to Full Shade
Full Shade

All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
Bright Yellow

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer
Mid Summer


Other details:
Requires consistently moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
By dividing the rootball
From softwood cuttings

Seed Collecting:
Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

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22 positives
4 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive sladeofsky On Jun 8, 2014, sladeofsky from Louisville, KY (Zone 6b) wrote:

Seed collection takes some expertise. This is from a fact sheet produced by The University of Kentucky:
Spigelia mariclandica seed is found in a two-sided capsule. The seeds are grouped into small balls of 4-7 seeds that separate readily. The capsules ripen from July 1 through July 15 in the UKREC Botanic Garden. . Unfortunately, within one or two days the seed will explosively dehisce (Darke, 2002) and be lost to the seed collector. The capsule will be black on the top and black-green on the bottom just before this happens; seed capsules collected at this time will split open ejecting the seed into the bag shortly after removal from the plant. Seed collection requires daily observation. It is recommended that seed be sown immediately after collection to ensure high percentage germination (Cullina, 2000; Glick 2002). Two year old seedlings will bloom. Barry Glick (2002) states deer dont browse Spigelia marilandica but our experience trying to collect seed in the wild would indicate that deer or some other creature does eat the flowers and stem down to the foliage in a similar fashion to deer feeding observed on Trillium recurvatum in west Kentucky.

Positive coriaceous On Jan 30, 2014, coriaceous from ROSLINDALE, MA wrote:

Easy, showy. A superb perennial, not grown nearly as often as it deserves.

To what everyone else has written, I only want to add that there's a form in cultivation in which the yellow tips to the flowers are a chartreuse yellow-green, which I think is even more beautiful than the usual.

Neutral catlady88 On Dec 30, 2013, catlady88 from LINVILLE, VA wrote:

I would love to have some seeds or buy some if someone can write back and let me know how to get them. Please!!

Positive bamboofish On Dec 9, 2013, bamboofish from Ottawa
Canada wrote:

I've seen spigelia growing at the Montreal Botanic Garden, zone 5.
I'm looking for anyone else growing it in these Canadian conditions, and who might also have some seed to share.


Positive loovejonesx On May 24, 2013, loovejonesx from Durham, NC wrote:

I have one of these in full sun & one in partial shade & the one in full sun has become one of the most stunning, the most prolific flowering clumps that I have ever seen. It has grown thicker & has more flowers each year, & I've had it for about four years now.

The yellow & red flowers have become more brilliant in color with each year. It loves water & responds to being a well drained , but consistently watered site. I couldn't find anything negative to say about this plant if I tried.

Positive corgimom On Mar 30, 2011, corgimom from Pontotoc, MS (Zone 7b) wrote:

This plant grows naturally in our wooded areas here but also thrives in my flowerbeds. They do best with some evening shade and require more water than most plants.

Clumps do multiply quickly and will become showy in a matter of a few years.

Positive vineviz On Aug 24, 2010, vineviz from Baltimore, MD wrote:

It's a beautiful plant, and it seems to be tolerant of a wide range of sites. Mine (in Maryland) is in full sun with a soil that is mostly clay, but it seems to be quite happy. The heat hasn't bothered it, and I've just got a rebloom in late August. Quite nice.

Positive weeds4wildlife On Jul 2, 2010, weeds4wildlife from Clarksburg, NJ wrote:

This plant was the hit for the tour of the gardens this year! Plants in both gardens were fin full bloom. A striking carefree plant, none of guests could identify and my favorite boast, it is native! Visually appealing, tolerates heavy soil and a hummingbird attractant! We are adding a greenhouse, so will be propagating this for next season.

Positive hishelpmate On Jun 25, 2010, hishelpmate from Perry, FL (Zone 8a) wrote:

I received this plant from a friend last spring (2009) and it bloomed beautifully in a small container. It did die back to the rootball in winter and I took it inside to overwinter.
It reared its pretty little stalks come spring and I moved the container outside. I did notice it struggling in the full sun despite the fact that I watered it every day. I had planned to move it to my butterfly/hbird raised bed this summer but have instead left it in its container and placed it under the shade of a palm tree on my deck.
I planted a lilac tree in the center of my raised bed and will wait until it reaches a height so as to provide some shade before moving my pink.
As for beauty....the vibrant red contrasts with the deep yellow as its blooms stack upon the stalk much like a gladiola. I usually deadhead before the seed pods form but if it blooms for me again this year I will try to capture the pods.

Positive Expatdame On May 27, 2010, Expatdame from Tallahassee, FL wrote:

This is our second year growing Indian pink in Tallahassee (zone 8b). It's in a bed of dappled light under oak trees, with morning sun and afternoon shade. We were afraid this winter's many freezing nights had killed it, but it came back better than ever and spread nicely. Gorgeous blooms this year for close to a month in late April/early May. A real keeper!

Positive kento On May 24, 2010, kento from Memphis, TN wrote:

It's growing very well for the second year in full sun in Memphis, TN.

Neutral redhead3kids On Oct 19, 2009, redhead3kids from Port Alberni
Canada wrote:

Are there any places in Canada I can get this plant?

Positive GinPetty On Oct 17, 2009, GinPetty from Berea, KY wrote:

There was only one Indian Pink growing on our farm and I'd never seen any others in the area. When we sold the farm, I dug it up and moved it with me, then dug is up when we moved again. That first plant is still living 14 years later. It and its offspring now form a sea of red/yellow each June in the shade bed underneath a Bradford pear. Even after they bloom, they're pretty all the way until frost. Each year I catch a few seeds before they explode and just poke them in the ground. They come up the next year but never get more than six inches tall. Come the following year, though, they take off and never slow down, getting bigger and bigger each year. An excellent choice for any shade bed.

Editing to mention that I have several with a varigated and silver. Never noticed this until last year. I planted several seeds from these plant hoping for more with similar leaf coloration.

Positive tufe On Oct 14, 2009, tufe from Newtonville, MA wrote:

It's beautiful. It does much better in dry conditions than I thought it would and it self-seeds pretty well--not a lot, but enough to make me happy.

Positive OESP On Oct 13, 2009, OESP from Malvern, AR wrote:

These attractive plants grow wild on our property in southcentral Arkansas. We have successfully moved them away from trafficked areas. White-tailed deer love them. Any suggestions on seed propagation (e.g., cold-soaking)?

Positive figaro52 On Oct 13, 2009, figaro52 from Oak Lawn, IL (Zone 5a) wrote:

This little gem grows reliably for me in full sun. I love the little yellow "stars" at the tip of the red tubular flowers.

Positive Villiers On Oct 12, 2009, Villiers from Chadds Ford, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

I was skeptical when I bought this plant in bloom in the summer of 2008. It had a tropical look to it and I was not sure it would make it through the winter in my zone 6a garden.
I never watered it after the first two weeks, and I was surprised when it came back in the spring. It is a very easy plant to grow in semi shade, no bugs bother it and best of all, deer leave it alone!

Positive clantonnaomi On Oct 12, 2009, clantonnaomi from Iredell, TX wrote:

I live in zone 8 in central Texas and the Indian Pinks have done very well here. I have them planted in dappled shade around a fountain under pecan trees and they are a mass of blooms in the spring and early summer. I highly recommend them.

Positive janesdtr On Aug 14, 2005, janesdtr from Pittsburgh, PA (Zone 5b) wrote:

This is a lovely plant that blooms twice for me. First in June and again in August. One interesting note, however, I bought it for a light shade area that met all of the plant's criteria, but it was very unhappy. I moved it to a dry, full sun area of my yard and it's been amazingly happy there.
*2007 Follow up - I was diligent this year about dead-heading the plant and it bloomed all summer/fall long!

Positive Soozie On May 31, 2005, Soozie from Ballwin, MO wrote:

I have this plant growing in full sun. This is the second year for it and it is lovely. It has travelled to the other end of the garden and is blooming there also. I will try to divide it and move some of it to another garden.

Neutral CaptMicha On Jan 5, 2005, CaptMicha from Brookeville, MD (Zone 7a) wrote:

Plants, medicinally, are used to expell worms and is a narcotic. Usage should be followed by a "saline aperient" like magnesium sulphate or unpleasant side effects could occur.

I will be buying plants or starting seed in the spring and will change my rating according to overall experience, including growing the plant.

Positive starlight1153 On Jan 2, 2005, starlight1153 from Seale, AL (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is an excellent plant for shady areas or those that get dappled sunlight. I grow it down here in a very naturally mulched wet sort of boggy area.

I have dig up divisions and tranplanted them to other shady areas to colonize this wildflower. After transplanting I watered several times a day and had prepared the ground with high organic matter. They love leaf mulch!

The plants will look like they want to die back for about two weeks after transplanting, but give them plenty of water and they will perk right back up.

I place panyhose around the seed pods to catch them. They are tiny green balls that turn to black when ripe. If you bring in the black ripened seeds pods to open, make sure you keep them in the panyhose or place in a container with a lid. When the seed pods open they explode and make a sound like snapping firecrackers and the seed will disperse all over the place.

Positive thehumblebumble On Aug 7, 2004, thehumblebumble from Heber Springs, AR (Zone 7b) wrote:

This native perennial is one of my favorite shade plant. I have heard people call it the lipstick plant here and I can understand why by looking at the beautiful bloom. The foliage is bright green and shiny. Clump forming.

Neutral PurplePansies On Jul 18, 2004, PurplePansies from Deal, NJ (Zone 7a) wrote:

Very lovely...... this Spigelia marilandica is a native and the colloquiall name indian pink refers to native AMericans...... woudl looooove some....... !!!!! :)

Positive chitwoodstock On Apr 28, 2004, chitwoodstock from Camden, AR wrote:

A wonderful shade loving plant. There's really not too much you can't say about this plant, nice foliage, striking yellow and red blooms, in a nice cluster and last but not least, a great cut flower for the dinner table, throw in some coreopsis and white penstimmon and you've got it made!

Positive MAllen On Jul 20, 2003, MAllen from Covington, LA wrote:

Fabulous perineal for the woodland shade garden. Pinch back faded blooms for a second show 3 to 4 weeks later. Seed and cuttings are slow. Sow seeds outside in fall covered to their depth in medium. I use a flat with a glass pane over it to keep out critters. If the leaves start to look yellow, add lime to the soil. Likes the dappled light of a forest.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Anniston, Alabama
Huntsville, Alabama
Pelham, Alabama
Seale, Alabama
Union Grove, Alabama
Heber Springs, Arkansas
Morrilton, Arkansas
Wilmington, Delaware
Gainesville, Florida
Hollywood, Florida
Ocala, Florida
Perry, Florida
Tallahassee, Florida (2 reports)
Valparaiso, Florida
Cornelia, Georgia
Forsyth, Georgia
Stone Mountain, Georgia
Lake Zurich, Illinois
Oak Lawn, Illinois
Waukegan, Illinois
Shawnee Mission, Kansas
Benton, Kentucky
Berea, Kentucky
Louisville, Kentucky (2 reports)
Symsonia, Kentucky
Bordelonville, Louisiana
Covington, Louisiana
Haughton, Louisiana
Holden, Louisiana
Lafayette, Louisiana
Lake Charles, Louisiana
Mandeville, Louisiana
Pineville, Louisiana
Baltimore, Maryland
Newtonville, Massachusetts
Roslindale, Massachusetts
Royal Oak, Michigan
Collins, Mississippi
Mccomb, Mississippi
Olive Branch, Mississippi
Pontotoc, Mississippi
Raymond, Mississippi
Ballwin, Missouri
Elsberry, Missouri
Piedmont, Missouri
Saint Louis, Missouri
Hudson, New Hampshire
Cape May, New Jersey
Clarksburg, New Jersey
Jamesburg, New Jersey
Middletown, New Jersey
New Milford, New Jersey
Whiting, New Jersey
Brooklyn, New York
Buffalo, New York
Croton On Hudson, New York
Schenectady, New York
Durham, North Carolina
Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Coshocton, Ohio
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Portland, Oregon
Salem, Oregon
Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania
Norristown, Pennsylvania
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Quakertown, Pennsylvania
Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania
Wynnewood, Pennsylvania
Charleston, South Carolina
Saint Helena Island, South Carolina
Summerville, South Carolina
Burns, Tennessee
Germantown, Tennessee
Memphis, Tennessee
Austin, Texas
Baytown, Texas
Floresville, Texas
Garland, Texas
Houston, Texas
Iredell, Texas
San Antonio, Texas
San Augustine, Texas
Alexandria, Virginia
Arlington, Virginia
Lexington, Virginia
Linville, Virginia
Mc Lean, Virginia
Woodbridge, Virginia

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