Big Red Kangaroo Paw in bloom
(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)
Plant Height: 24 inches
Flower Height: 6 feet
Spread: 24 inches
Hardiness Zone: (annual)
Other Names: Cat's Paw
An attractive tall variety with strappy foliage that may reach two feet in height; stunning dark red flowers rise above in spring and summer; a great color addition to garden beds, borders or containers
Big Red Kangaroo Paw features unusual racemes of dark red flowers rising above the foliage from late spring to mid fall. The flowers are excellent for cutting. Its sword-like leaves remain dark green in color throughout the year. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.
Big Red Kangaroo Paw is an open herbaceous annual with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its relatively coarse texture can be used to stand it apart from other garden plants with finer foliage.
This plant will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best cleaned up in early spring before it resumes active growth for the season. It has no significant negative characteristics.
Big Red Kangaroo Paw is recommended for the following landscape applications;
- Mass Planting
- General Garden Use
- Container Planting
Planting & Growing
Big Red Kangaroo Paw will grow to be about 24 inches tall at maturity extending to 6 feet tall with the flowers, with a spread of 24 inches. Although it's not a true annual, this plant can be expected to behave as an annual in our climate if left outdoors over the winter, usually needing replacement the following year. As such, gardeners should take into consideration that it will perform differently than it would in its native habitat.
This plant should only be grown in full sunlight. It prefers dry to average moisture levels with very well-drained soil, and will often die in standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. It is not particular as to soil type, but has a definite preference for acidic soils. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This particular variety is an interspecific hybrid. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.
Big Red Kangaroo Paw is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. With its upright habit of growth, it is best suited for use as a 'thriller' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination; plant it near the center of the pot, surrounded by smaller plants and those that spill over the edges. It is even sizeable enough that it can be grown alone in a suitable container. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.