General Plant Information (Edit)
Plant Habit: Herb/Forb
Life cycle: Perennial
Sun Requirements: Full Sun
Water Preferences: Mesic
Dry Mesic
Minimum cold hardiness: Zone 3 -40 °C (-40 °F) to -37.2 °C (-35)
Maximum recommended zone: Zone 8b
Plant Height: 24 - 36 inches
Plant Spread: 6 - 12 inches
Leaves: Unusual foliage color
Fruit: Showy
Flowers: Showy
Flower Color: Mauve
Bloom Size: Under 1"
Flower Time: Spring
Late spring or early summer
Underground structures: Taproot
Suitable Locations: Xeriscapic
Uses: Will Naturalize
Wildlife Attractant: Bees
Propagation: Seeds: Provide light
Can handle transplanting

Common names
  • Large-flowered Beardtongue
  • Large-flower beardtongue
  • Shell-leaf Penstemon
  • Large-flowered penstemon
  • Large Beardtongue
  • Beard Tongue
  • Pride of the Mountain
  • Penstemon

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  • Posted by Chillybean (Iowa - Zone 5a) on Jul 23, 2015 12:01 PM concerning plant:
    I have abused this poor plant. I later learned they like sandy/rocky soil, so next to the driveway was a good choice. They showed some new growth before the summer ended. This year the Wild Bergamot exploded (!), nearly covering one of the small Beardtongues, so I moved it over a little. In spite of that, this one plant bloomed this year. I planted some other lively natives in that area, so I believe these Beardtongues would be overwhelmed in a year or two.

    They were transplanted to another rocky location, but with some sand added, and they haven't died on me yet. We did this before the seed pods could break open and I hope there will be even more in the coming years.

    For those who use fire in prairie restorations and maintenance, the large-flowered beardtongue will not survive! In the areas they are found naturally, there is sparse vegetation, so there is little fuel for the fires to consume.
  • Posted by Cyclaminist (Minneapolis, Minnesota - Zone 5a) on Apr 28, 2016 7:34 PM concerning plant:
    A lovely plant: thick succulent gray-blue leaves and big pastel purple flowers. Likes dry soil and full sun, but is more moisture-tolerant than most of the other succulent penstemons. One of my absolute favorites. It blooms for a short time, but it's worth it.

    Longer-lived if you cut off the seed pods (or leave one or two per stalk). Each pod has tons of seeds, and they use up the energy that the plant would otherwise use to prepare for next year's growth. One of my plants has survived for 3 or so years because I clip off most of the seed pods. One or two seed pods have more than enough seed for spreading around the garden to start new plants.
Plant Events from our members
lovesblooms On January 28, 2017 Seeds sown
lovesblooms On January 15, 2017 Seeds sown
lovesblooms On April 20, 2015 Seeds germinated
lovesblooms On February 11, 2015 Seeds sown
winter sown
Chillybean On June 19, 2015 Transplanted
Learned they do not like competition, so moved three away from some lively Wild Bergomot and Hoary Vervain to our Prairie-to-be. They had finished blooming and were setting seed.
MrsBinWY On January 6, 2019 Seeds sown
WS eight (8x5) 2.25" pots, seeds from 2017G
MrsBinWY On November 25, 2017 Seeds sown
Experiment: Eight (8) 2.25" pots in garden hoop, seeds from 2017G
» Post your own event for this plant

Discussion Threads about this plant
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Gorgeous penstemon by Duffymeadows Jun 9, 2020 3:20 PM 1

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