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Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia
Penstemon canescens (Britton) Britton
Eastern gray beardtongue
Synonym(s): Penstemon brittoniorum, Penstemon canescens var. brittoniorum, Penstemon canescens var. typicus
USDA Symbol: peca8
USDA Native Status: L48 (N)
Delicate, erect stems, usually several from the same rhizome, are 16-24 in. tall. Pale-lavender or white, snapdragon-like flowers occur in pairs along the upper part of the stem. A downy stem topped by a loose cluster of showy, tubular, violet-purple to pinkish flowers with darker violet-purple lines inside corolla. The paired, stem foliage is dark-green.
This is one of numerous beardtongues, which are most common in the western United States. The common name beardtongue refers to the tuft of hairs found on the sterile stamen of many species, including this one. Cobaea Beardtongue (P. cobaea), found on prairies and rocky bluffs from Nebraska east to Ohio, southwest through Missouri to Texas, and north to Kansas, reaches a height of 2 (60 cm) and has downy, clasping leaves and white to deep purple flowers to 2 (5 cm) long.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Flower:
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White , Purple
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul
, WV Native Distribution:
to s. IN,
s., chiefly in the mts., to SC
& n.e. AL Native Habitat:
Shady banks spreading to roadsides, fields & woods
Growing ConditionsLight Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Dry, sandy soils.
Conditions Comments: Not Available
PropagationDescription: Division is the easiest method of increase. Separate crowns in fall or early spring. Prune back the foliage of each new division. Propagate also by seed.
Seed Collection: Not Available
Seed Treatment: Germination is best with cold-moist stratification.
Commercially Avail: yes
From the National Suppliers Directory
According to the inventory provided by Associate Suppliers, this plant is available at the following locations:
- Hinton, WV
From the National Organizations Directory
According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:
Mt. Cuba Center
- Hockessin, DE
Record Last Modified: 2010-06-07
Research By: TWC Staff