Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: South African Foxglove, Wild Foxglove
Ceratotheca triloba

Family: Pedaliaceae
Genus: Ceratotheca (ser-uh-toh-THEK-uh) (Info)
Species: triloba (try-LO-buh) (Info)

2 vendors have this plant for sale.

21 members have or want this plant for trade.

Tropicals and Tender Perennials

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)
USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

All parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer
Late Summer/Early Fall
Mid Fall


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds
Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

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There are a total of 21 photos.
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7 positives
4 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive treesmoocher On Feb 4, 2015, treesmoocher from Spencer, WV wrote:

Had no trouble starting it from seed; ended up with four plants in my sunny bed, in two pairs. One of each pair got five feet tall, the other half that size. One was white, the others the usual purple. They made plenty of blooms like the pictures, and it seeded prolifically. The only negative is that the biggest one leaned over, even after I tried to lasso it to the fence. This is not a dainty little plant, but if you put it in the right spot it will make lots of those amazing flowers.

Positive tiiuk On Oct 16, 2014, tiiuk from Baldwin, MD wrote:

I have 13 plants from seed. 2 plants have white flowers and I noticed that the white-flowered form has white or pale yellow stems and the purple-flowered one has dark purple stems. Very large bumble bees are attracted to this plant but I have not seen them actually enter the flower. They spend a lot of time poking at the top of the bloom where it attaches to the stem. Formation of seedpods is not prolific and I wonder if it is because of the unusual approach of the bees.

Positive faithgardener On Jun 19, 2012, faithgardener from Enid, OK wrote:

We have grown this great plant in Enid, OK the past three years. Last year during over 100 days of over 100 degree heat it not only survived, but thrived. It is a great re-seeding annual for us. I love watching the bumble bees wiggling into the blossoms for a treat! With our winds we do stake it because the plants get so large.

Neutral pgt On Mar 31, 2010, pgt from Chalfont, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

I just wanted to add that I wintersowed Ceratotheca triloba seeds this winter, and they sprouted in early March, and are doing well. It's still only the end of March, so I don't know how the plants will do, but I'll update when I find out.

Neutral mjsponies On Jun 17, 2009, mjsponies from DeLand/Deleon Springs, FL (Zone 8b) wrote:

I wanted this soooooo badly, seeds came up fine, out of 10 seedlings only one is healthy and blooming. Several seedlings keeled over and died early on, two got buds and wilted over and 1 of them has died. One is blooming happily away.
No clue as to why...gave it morning sun, afternoon shade...all treated the same.
I might try them again to see if I can grow as a "fall" annual.

Positive BlueGlancer On Nov 7, 2007, BlueGlancer from South/Central, FL (Zone 9a) wrote:

Received this plant in with another plant, during a trade. I planted it under a magnolia tree, and didn't know what it was. It gets morning sun, and probably watered once a week.
When it bloomed I was pleasantly surprised. I love it. : )

Positive Mands On Mar 11, 2007, Mands from Slingerlands, NY wrote:

It grew wonderfully for me, becoming a five-foot, sprawling plant with lovely flowers that the bees couldn't get enough of.

The only thing I didn't like was the foliage has an odd odor, which I found as offensive as cilantro's.

Neutral bluespiral On Jan 6, 2007, bluespiral from (Zone 7a) wrote:

A little more detail on propagating this plant from seed.

Sow seed in a baggy at 70*F. Around 40% - 87% of the seed should germinate between 7 - 16 days.

In the baggy method, a relatively sturdy paper like coffee filter paper is moistened and then wrung until barely damp. Place the seed in the center of the barely damp filter and pull 1/3 up over the seed, then the top 1/3 down over the seed and then fold the ends over the center. Place that arrangement along with a water-proof label inside a baggy and transplant as soon as they germinate. Some gardeners hang the baggies vertically in light, unless it is known that the seed requires darkness to germinate.

Positive CaptMicha On May 30, 2005, CaptMicha from Brookeville, MD (Zone 7a) wrote:

This plant has large, soft and furry flowers with striped insides. The leaves are equally large, soft and furry.

It's a delightful, easy plant.

Positive Terry On Aug 30, 2002, Terry from Murfreesboro, TN (Zone 7a) wrote:

Easy to grow from seed; mine stayed a nice 24-30" tall and have bloomed steadily since early summer.

Neutral poppysue On Aug 11, 2001, poppysue from Westbrook, ME (Zone 5a) wrote:

Native to South Africa and grows 4-6 feet tall with soft hairy leaves. Tubular lavender or white flowers are born on tall spikes similar to a foxgloves.


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

Waverly, Alabama
Blackhawk-camino Tassajara, California
Fallbrook, California
Huntington Beach, California
Santa Clara, California
Stockton, California
Denver, Colorado
Wilmington, Delaware
Deland, Florida
Riverview, Florida
Wauchula, Florida
Hazel Crest, Illinois
Barbourville, Kentucky
Ewing, Kentucky
New Orleans, Louisiana
Baldwin, Maryland
Damascus, Maryland
Millersville, Maryland
Saint Cloud, Minnesota
Buffalo, New York
Slingerlands, New York
Newport, North Carolina
Enid, Oklahoma
Murrells Inlet, South Carolina
North Augusta, South Carolina
Lenoir City, Tennessee
Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Floresville, Texas
Leesburg, Virginia
Spencer, West Virginia

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