CARDINAL FLOWER, Lobelia cardinalis


Photo by Sue J. Avery

Cardinal flower is a striking plant standing two to five feet tall. It has scarlet petals the color of a cardinal’s robe. The flower is a long tube with two lobed lips and protruding stamens. The ruby-throated hummingbird, whose long beak easily accesses the nectar at the bottom of the long tube, is attracted to this vibrant flower. The distribution of the cardinal flower is closely tied with the population of hummingbirds. The plant grows in wet meadows and stream banks, a habitat that is becoming scarcer as land is increasingly developed.

More information

US Department of Agriculture


Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center