Foxglove Beardtongue (Penstemon)/Tall White
|Plant Height||2-3 Ft.|
|Seed Count||2,000,000 Seeds per LB.|
|Botanical Name||Penstemon digitalis|
|Pollinator Value||Very Good|
Penstemons are perennial forbs, subshrubs to shrubs with attractive flowers. Common to the Western United States. They are short to long-lived. Penstemons have opposite, entire or toothed leaves. They have several stalked flowers or flower clusters that are borne in the axils of the upper leaves or leaflike bracts. The fruit is a many-seeded capsule.
USES: All species are mentioned for their value in mixes for erosion control and beautification values. Penstemons are considered desirable forages for deer, antelope and birds either as herbage or seed. They may also provide some cover for selected small bird species. They provide diversity to the plant community.
RANGE & HABITAT: Penstemons do best on well-drained soils. They have excellent cold winter and drought tolerance. They will tolerate weakly saline to weakly acidic sites. They are usually found in open areas, but will tolerate semi-shaded conditions.
CULTIVATION: These species should be seeded with a drill or broadcast at a depth of ¼ inch or less into affirm seedbed. Ideal seeding depth is 1/8 inch. The full seeding rate for these forbs-shrubs is 1.5 to 3 pounds Pure Live Seed (PLS) per acre. The best seeding results are obtained from seeding in very early spring on heavy to medium textured soils and in late fall on medium to light textured soils; late summer (August – mid September) is not recommended. Dormant fall seedings will pre-chill seed and reduce seed dormancy which is very strong in some species. Growth of Penstemons begins in early spring and flowers appear in May through July, depending on species. Weed control and removal of very competitive species may improve chance of establishment.