Species Identification

Interested in the identification of penstemons? Please select a species then click on submit:

AttributeThe current selection is Penstemon_gracilis
ClassificationPenstemon Penstemon Penstemon Penstemon
GeneralSlender Penstemon This species has the western-most distribution of any in section Penstemon, found from New Mexico north into the Great Plains, in Minnesota, Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. It competes well with sod-forming grasses in a garden. Blooms: Late May to early August.
AntherWidely spreading apart, with toothed edges on openings; sometimes slightly pouch-shaped, hairless.
StaminodeDensely golden-bearded most of length, just reaching the opening.
LeavesCauline leaves to 10cm (4) long and 1/5-1/7 as wide, lowest stem leaves reduced in size, slightly toothed or entire, basal leaves few.
Stems1.5-5 dm (6-20) tall; stem leafy.
InflorescenseNarrow thyrse, cyme 1-3 cm (to 1) long, many (2-6) flowered.
Corollasmall, 15-23 mm (1/2-1) long, expanded slightly, pale blue-violet, lip lobes 1/5 length of flower; guidelines prominent and joined at outer end, sticky-hairy, with an extended white bearded throat.
Flower Color
Calyx4-7 mm (1/4) long.
HabitatSandy, gravelly soils, grassy meadows, 1800 m (6000).
RangeWI to Alberta and NM, through the Great Plains to the Platt River valley in NE, east across MN, down upper Mississippi valley to WI. subsp gracilis: Leaves essentially smooth, Great Plains from British Columbia, northern Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba e to sw Ontario, s to CO, nw Iowa to NM. subsp wisconsinensis (Pennell) Pennell) [syn: P. wisconsinensis]: Leaves pubescent (fuzzy), ND, WI.