in Tucson, Phoenix,
Arizona and California

Gardening in Tucson, Phoenix, Arizona and California

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Growing Lobelia laxiflora: Mexican Bush Lobelia

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Form: A clumping herb.
Lifespan: Perennial.
Leaf retention: Evergreen in regions without freezes.
Growth rate: Rapid.
Mature Size: 1-2' high and 4-5' wide.
Flowers: Orange to red, tubular, yellow throats, 2" long.
Bloom: Late winter through spring.
Fruit: Seed pod.
Leaves: Dark green, long, narrow.
Stems: No thorns. Reddish on new growth. Floppy.
Roots: This plant spreads by rhizomes and is invasive in moist soil.
Wildlife: Attracts hummingbirds. Usually avoided by mammals.
Toxic / Danger: All parts of this plant are toxic.
Origin: Arizona, Mexico, Central and South America.

Cultivation and Uses
USDA hardiness zones: 7-11. This plant dies to the ground in hard freezes and regrows from its roots in the spring.
Heat tolerant: Yes.
Drought tolerant: Yes.
Sun: It requires part shade above 85°F, especially afternoon shade. Below 80°F it will thrive in full sun.
Water once established: Once or twice a month. It may need weekly water in the hottest months of the year.
Soil: Dry to moist, pH 6.1-7.5 (slightly acidic to neutral).
Prune: Cut dead stems and foliage to the ground after the first freeze.
Litter: Low.
Propagation: Seed or rootball division.
Uses: Ornamental, erosion control, hummingbird garden.

This plant is a member of the Bellflower family (Campanulaceae). Other common names are Mexican Cardinal Flower, Sierra Madre Lobelia and Desert Lobelia.

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Latest update: January, 2019.

Lobelia laxiflora: Red Mexican Lobelia - flowers

Lobelia laxiflora: Red Mexican Lobelia