PEN-steh-mon bar-BAY-tus. This erect perennial has basal rosettes and stems bearing lance-shaped mid-green leaves. The plant bears long panicles of scarlet or yellow flowers from early summer to early autumn. CareEasy to grow in fertile, well-drained soil and full sun to part shade.
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Water once established: Once or twice a month in light shade, or weekly in full sun. Soil: Well drained, dry, low organic content, pH 6.1-7.8 (slightly acidic to slightly alkaline).
Best grown in full sun in fertile, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soils. Tolerates almost any soils including dry soils. Drought tolerant once established.
Feed beardtongue plants once a year with an organic fertilizer, applied in the fall.
For the best quality, grow them with 24-hour average temperatures of 60-64¡ F. This can be obtained using consistent day and night temperatures or using cool nights (55-60¡ F) and warm days (65-70¡ F). At these temperatures, Pinacolada cultivars will reach flowering nine to 11 weeks after transplanting.
Penstemon 'Iron Maiden' has no toxic effects reported.
Penstemon barbatus, commonly called southwestern penstemon, is native to rocky slopes and open woodlands from Utah and Colorado to Arizona, Texas and Mexico. It is a clump-forming perennial that typically grows 1.5-3' tall.
Prune penstemon vigorously in winter.