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PENSTEMON virgatus 'Blue Buckle'

Image of Penstemon virgatus 'Blue Buckle'

Jesse Saylor

Family

Scrophulariaceae

Botanical Name

PENSTEMON virgatus 'Blue Buckle'

Plant Common Name

Upright Blue Beardtongue

Special Notice

This entry has yet to be reviewed and approved by L2G editors.

General Description

This variety is considered more garden worthy than the species due to both showy purple-blue flowers and wider a tolerance for heavier soils. The parent plant is known as wandbloom for the way the crowded flowers are held on the stems, this is a showy, blue purple perennial for mountain gardens. It is native to a relatively small range of northern New Mexico and northern Arizona, proving a tolerance for higher altitude, arid conditions and less than ideal soils. A subspecies of this plant is also found in the Rocky Mountains on both sides of the Continental Divide.

While it is not as majestic as some penstemons, the rich color of the flowers held so densely results in greater visibility, particularly in open rock garden settings. It will naturalize well in porous rocky soils of mountain ranges throughout the West. Because leaves often die out after flowering, this plant doesn’t offer much to look at after the color is gone. But as with so many western natives, they rest out the natural drought here of late summer and fall. Consider this a perfect choice for mountain resort communities with barren soils in need of bold summer perenial gardens for year around residents of the middle elevations and high country.

Characteristics

  • AHS Heat Zone

    8 - 1

  • USDA Hardiness Zone

    3 - 8

  • Sunset Zone

    1a, 1b, 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b, 10, 11, 12, 13

  • Plant Type

    Perennial

  • Sun Exposure

    Full Sun, Partial Sun

  • Height

    12"-15" / 30.5cm - 38.1cm

  • Width

    12"-14" / 30.5cm - 35.6cm

  • Bloom Time

    Summer

  • Native To

    Southwestern United States

Growing Conditions

  • Soil pH

    Acidic

  • Soil Drainage

    Well Drained

  • Soil type

    Loam, Sand

  • Tolerances

    Drought

  • Growth Rate

    Medium

  • Water Requirements

    Drought Tolerant

  • Habit

    Upright/Erect

  • Seasonal Interest

    Summer

Ornamental Features

  • Flower Interest

    Showy

  • Flower Color

    Blue, Purple

  • Foliage Color (Spring)

    Green

  • Foliage Color (Summer)

    Green

  • Fragrant Flowers

    No

  • Fragrant Fruit

    No

  • Fragrant Foliage

    No

  • Bark or Stem Fragrant

    No

  • Flower Petal Number

    Single

  • Repeat Bloomer

    No

  • Showy Fruit

    No

  • Edible Fruit

    No

  • Showy Foliage

    No

  • Foliage Texture

    Fine

  • Foliage Sheen

    Glossy

  • Evergreen

    No

  • Showy Bark

    No

Special Characteristics

  • Usage

    Alpine, Rock Garden / Wall, Wildflower

  • Sharp or Has Thorns

    No

  • Invasive

    No

  • Attracts

    Hummingbirds

  • Self-Sowing

    No