Picture of Common Foxglove.
With my love of the countryside and its wildflowers, I was a little surprised that I had not yet got a reasonable photo of the Common Foxglove.
I was walking through some fields along the banks of the Leeds - Liverpool canal just down from the village of Calverley this afternoon. I saw more dragonflies than at any time since I was a boy, but they were mostly in among the reeds at the edge of the canal, so not having waders I could not get a decent photo. This stretch of the canal the towpath is on the far side and on my side it was mostly muddy grass with no real edge.
Walking back up towards the track I passed a clump of Digitalis purpurea (Common Foxglove, Purple Foxglove or Lady's Glove). The flower was on the field boundary next to a rather broken down dry stone wall.
The entire foxglove plant is toxic (including the roots and seeds), although the leaves of the upper stem are particularly potent, with just a nibble, or a deep inhaled breath, being enough to potentially cause death. Digitalis is also used in modern medicine mostly in the treatment of heart problems.
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