What we love about penstemon seeds
- Native to Mexico
- Thrives in bright, sunny growing areas
- Attracts butterflies and other pollinators
- Tall-growing heirloom with multi-colored summer blooms
why penstemon is a garden favorite
All of our favorite flowers and vegetables are native somewhere, and penstemon is native to North America. Also known as Beardtongues, these flowers resemble foxgloves but are a lot less picky about growing conditions. Boasting shades of pink, purple, blue, and white—it’s no wonder people and hummingbirds alike are drawn to these trumpet-shaped blooms.
Incorporate penstemon into your garden for early summer blooms, as they tend to bloom after spring bulbs and before summer flowers. Beardtonges thrive in sunny locations in fertile, well-draining soil. These perennials, native to semi-arid regions, are drought tolerant once established and will happily grow two to three feet tall. Penstemon is a lovely choice for ground cover, and as it isn’t too picky with soils, is a great choice for controlling erosion on slopes.
how and when to plant penstemon seeds
Penstemon seeds can be started indoors or direct-seeded, but this perennial does benefit from stratification, or a period of cold exposure, before the seeds can germinate. For this reason, sow penstemon in the fall in temperate zones, or refrigerate the seed for a few months before starting seeds indoors in late winter. Once your seedlings are in the garden, mulch your penstemon plants to suppress weeds and give about an inch of water a week. Stay away from fertilizer, except for amending the soil at initial planting.
creating a pollinator haven
Do yourself—and the environment—a favor by planting native flowering perennials in your garden! Plant penstemon alongside other flowering perennials like echinacea and rudbeckia, and watch native pollinators feast on your garden all season long. Food for the pollinators, and in turn the pollinators make your vegetable harvest much more prolific. Not a bad trade-off, after all.
Eden Brothers has three lovely penstemon varieties to choose from. Whether you want to curate your own color palette or you prefer a pre-made mix, there’s a beardtongue variety that belongs in your garden.
For more information about planting, growing, and harvesting penstemon seeds, see the Penstemon Seeds Planting Guide.