Penstemon davidsonii

Davidson's Beardtongue

Huge lavender-pink flowers held over its dark green evergreen foliage combine to make this Davidson's Beardtongue a fantastic little garden shrub. Normally a finicky species, our selected form of Penstemon davidsonii (propagated by cuttings from one original plant), has proven itself to be easy-to-grow and long-lived in lean, well-drained soil. 8-10" tall x 12-15" wide.
Zones 5 - 8
Advantages
Deer Resistant
Attract Hummingbirds
Rabbit Resistant
Native
Evergreen
Light Requirements
Full Sun
Annual Rainfall 10 to 20", 20 to 30", 30 to 40"
Mature Plant Size 8-10" tall , 12-15" wide
Bloom TimeLate spring through summer
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Size No
SKUHC016185

USDA Hardiness Planting Zones

To determine if a plant is sufficiently cold hardy, the USDA created numbered zones indicating winter low temperatures; the lower the zone number the colder the winter.

  • If the coldest winter temperature expected in your area is -15°F (zone 5) then any plants rated zones 3-5 will survive the winter temperatures in your area.
  • If you live in very warm winter areas (zones 9-11) plants with zones 3-4 ratings are not recommended. The lack of freezing winter temperatures do not provide a time for winter dormancy (rest).

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SKU
HC016185

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Details
8-10" tall x 12-15" wide. Huge lavender-pink flowers held over its dark green evergreen foliage combine to make this little beardtongue a fantastic little garden shrub. Normally a finicky species, our selected form (propagated by cuttings from one original plant), has proven itself to be easy-to-grow and long-lived in lean, well-drained soil. Outside of the Pacific NW, plant it in afternoon shade
More Information
SKU
HC016185
Ships To Canada
No
Common Name
Davidson's Beardtongue
Botanical Name
Penstemon davidsonii (West Jordan Valley Form)
Zones
5, 6, 7, 8
Light Requirements
Full Sun
Flower Color
Pink
Height
12 inches
Mature Height
8-10" tall
Mature Spread
12-15" wide
Bloom Time
Late Spring - Early Summer, Early - Mid Summer
Bloom Time
Late spring through summer
Ships As
Potted Plant
Evergreen Foliage
Yes
Planting Time
Spring / Summer, Fall
Soil Type
Sandy Soil, Low Fertility Soil, Well-Drained Soil
Soil Moisture
Drought Resistant / Waterwise
Amount Of Rain
10 to 20", 20 to 30", 30 to 40"
Advantages
Deer Resistant, Attract Hummingbirds, Rabbit Resistant, Native, Evergreen
Special Groups
High Country Gardens Exclusive, High Country Gardens Introduction
Ideal Region
West, Western Only, Southwest, Pacific Northwest
Native To
North America
Planting Guides

Tips for growing Penstemon (Beardtongue)

Penstemon are generally evergreen and have beautiful flowers that are very attractive to hummingbirds. Most varieties are rabbit resistant.

  1. They need “elbow room,” maximum sun, heat and don’t like to be crowded by other plants.
  2. Plant only in well-drained soils; clay soils and Penstemon are incompatible.
  3. Avoid overly enriched soils; too much compost and fertilizer will shorten their lifespan.
  4. They establish quickly and the amount and frequency of watering needs to be reduced after about 8 to 10 weeks to create dry conditions.
  5. When using drip irrigation, be sure to put the emitter off to the side of the plant, not right on top of the root ball to avoid overwatering the plant.
  6. Plant high, leaving the top of the rootball just above the surrounding soil to avoid burying the crown of the plant.
  7. Mulch with gravel or pine needles in arid climates. No mulch is needed where conditions are moister. Always avoid bark, grass clippings, or compost as mulch materials.
  8. Allow some of the plants to set seed (don't deadhead all of the flower spikes)*.
  9. Fertilize sparingly. One time each year in the fall is enough. Apply a light application of an organic or natural fertilizer such as Yum Yum Mix as a top dressing around the plants. Don't use high nitrogen water soluble fertilizer like Miracle Gro

*To keep penstemon that have finely textured or matted evergreen foliage looking their best, you'll want to 'deadhead" them. Shear off the fading flowering spikes just as the plant is going out of flower. Gently bunch the flower spikes together with one hand and cut them off at the point where they go down into the mat of foliage with your clipper in your other hand. Recommended for the following varieties: P. pinifolius types (‘Compactum', ‘Mersea Yellow', ‘Nearly Red', ‘Magdalena Sunshine' and ‘Tall Orange Mix'), as well as Penstemon linarioides v. coloradensis and Penstemon virens ('Blue Lips').

More in-depth guidance for growing Penstemon: Watch our video: How To Plant Penstemon or read articles: Growing Penstemon, Penstemon for the Waterwise Garden, David’s Favorite Plants: Pineleaf Beardtongue, The Beardtongue Family: Penstemania for Penstemon and The Genus Penstemon: The Royalty of American Wildflowers The Genus Penstemon: The Royalty of American Wildflowers (Part 2).


View more Planting Guides, or download our complete Planting Guide for tips on caring for your plants when you receive your order, as well as planting instructions for Perennials, Spring-Planted Bulbs, Fall-Planted Bulbs, Cacti & Succulents, Xeric Plants and more.
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