Spigelia marilandica 'Little Redhead'
Common names: Maryland Pink, Indian Pink
Spigelia marilandica 'Little Redhead' is one of the last perennials to emerge in spring. In the wild, it grows in woodlands and along streambanks throughout the eastern United States. S. marilandica 'Little Redhead' is a popular plant among wildflower enthusiasts. It is a clump-forming perennial in the Logania family (Loganiaceae) which consists primarily of tropical plants.
The scarlet-red, trumpet-shaped flowers with yellow star-shaped centres sit atop tall, upright stems which are about 40 to 60 centimetres (18 to 24 inches) in height. These flowers are a magnet for hummingbirds. The dark green, lance-shaped leaves do not have petioles (leaf stalks), and are directly attached to the four-sided stems.
S. marilandica 'Little Redhead' is an adaptable plant, and will grow in sun or shade as long as the area has average moisture, and good drainage. It is an excellent cut flower in fresh flower arrangements.
The genus name Spigelia honours Adriaan van den Spiegel, a Flemish physician and anatomist who also enjoyed botany. He was a professor of anatomy at Padua. The specific epithet means 'of Maryland'.
Several clusters of Spigelia marilandica 'Little Redhead' can be found in Bed 27 of the Eastern North America collection. The photos were taken on July 10, 2023.
Text and photos by Kumi Sutcliffe