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Hollinshead Water-wise Garden Plants

Photo:
Nathalie Smith

Taxon ID#

64

This perennial's striking feature is its scarlet flowers. Five to ten long, narrow, tubular blossoms top each of the numerous 2 ft. high stems.

Scientific  Name:

Penstemon eatonii

Common Name 1

› Firecracker Penstemon

Family:

Scrophulariaceae

Origins:

Southwest CO & UT to central AZ southwest CA

Plant Type:

Herbaceous Plant, Perennial
Common Name 2

› Firecracker Beardtongue

Common Name 3

› Eaton's Penstemon

Oregon native:

no

Western state native:

yes

Scroll down for more information on each topic

Landscape Application Information

Seasonal Care

Resource Links

MAINTENANCE

Maintenance Level:

Low

Min. USDA Hardiness Zone:

4

Sun Preference:

Partial Sun

Water Preference:

L

Soil Preference:

Dry, gravelly soils

Fertilizer Needs:

Recommended Mulch:

Gravel or nothing

PLANT DESCRIPTION

Foliage Color:

Green

Foliage Description:

The leaves, found mostly in the basal rosette, are lance-shaped to oval, untoothed, and up to 9 centimeters in length.

Fragrant:

no

Predominant flower color:

Red

Flower Description:

Five to ten long, narrow, red tubular blossoms top each of the numerous tall stems.

Fall color:

no

Fall Color Description:

Winter Foliage:

Deciduous

Winter Interest:

no

Winter Interest Description:

Mature height:

2.5-3'

Mature spread:

3'

Growth rate:

Medium

LANDSCAPE APPLICATION

Deer Resistant:

no

Fire Resistant:

yes

Attracts Pollinators:

yes

Attracts Butterflies:

yes

Native Habitat:

It is native to the western United States from California to the Rocky Mountains, where it grows in many types of desert, woodland, forest, and open plateau habitat. In California it is found primarily in high desert areas.

Attracts Birds:

yes

Cut/Dried Flowers:

yes

Used by Wildlife:

yes

Swales:

no

Wildlife Use:

Hummingbirds love the flowers. Species in the Penstemon genus are host plants to several butterfly species including the Arachne Checkerspot, Chalcedon Checkerspot, and Common Buckeye. Penstemons are considered desirable forages for deer, antelope, and b

Photo:

Hedge/Screen:

no

Border:

yes

Erosion Control:

yes

Windbreak:

no

Ground Cover:

yes

Provides Shade:

no

Rock Garden:

yes

Cover Structures:

no

First Bloom:

Jun

Last Bloom:

Adds Texture/Movement:

Aug

Ornamental Accent:

yes

no

Garden Observations:

Seasonal Care
Maintenance

SEASONAL CARE

Spring Care:

Summer Care:

To extend the lifespan of the plant, deadhead the flower spikes when flowering is done. But be sure to leave some seeds to ripen on the plant.(https://www.highcountrygardens.com/perennial-plants/penstemon/penstemon-eatonii) or clip back stalks after final

Fall Care:

Winter Care:

Leave some stems for frost protection and mulch with straw in winter, if necessary.

Long Term Care:

Insect Pests:

Wildlife Pests:

Diseases:

Environmental Problems:

Landscape Problems:

Disease problems are minimal except under irrigation. Under irrigation, fusarium wilt can be a problem.

Care Comments:

Penstemon are low maintenance. The main requirement for success is that they need to be planted in well-drained soil-they do not like to have wet feet or crowns. They do best in lean soil without any additional amendments.

RESOURCES

OSU Landscape Profile:

USDA Plants:

Calscape Database:

LBJ Native Plant Database:

Missouri Botanical Garden Database:

Monrovia Profile:

Alternate Source 1:

Alternate Source 2:

Source Comment:

Landscape Application
Resource Links

Plant Maintenance Information

Image by Mikaela Wiedenhoff

Sponsors
Desert Peaks Healthcare
George & Vickie Minor
Whistle Stop Farm & Flowers

McPheeter's Turf
High Desert Farms Nursery Sales, LLC
Schilling's Garden Market

Speakers
Karen McCarthy, Madras Garden Depot
Dan Denning, City of Bend
Nicole Bell, OSU Ecology Lab

Professor Amy Jo Detweiler
Craig LeHoullier
Amanda Egertson, Deschutes Land Trust
Dana Sanchez, OSU
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Renee's Garden Seeds
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