Smooth Beardtongue (Penstemon laevigatus)

Smooth Beardtongue 1

 

The Cherokee would make a tea from the roots to treat stomach cramps.   Smooth Beardtongue is a perennial that likes rich loamy soils and will grow to heights of three feet.   It has white and purple blooms from May thru July.   It is a natural attraction for bees, butterflies and hummingbirds.   Its lance shaped leaves can be up to four inches in length.   The flowers are produced in open clusters on the upper part of the stems.   The flowers have a protruding hairy lower lip which is how it got its name beardtongue.   If you grow this plant from seed, you will need a period of cold moist stratification to increase germination rates.   Plants started in the spring will not bloom until the summer of the following year.

The beardtongue was have planted is two years old so we are hoping to have blooms this summer.    We will post additional pictures when it blooms.

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