Produces tall stems adorned with long, almost triangular, green leaves. In summer these bear a flourish of lilac, bell shaped flowers which have deep burgundy throats.
What to use it for
Perfect for cottage style beds and borders.
How to look after it
Will need support in exposed areas to prevent the long stems from bending.
How to prune it
Deadhead regularly to prolong flowering. Cut back to ground level in early spring.
How to propagate it
Semi-ripe stem tip cuttings can be taken in late summer or early autumn. Alternatively seeds can be collected in late summer/autumn and sown in early spring at 15°C, although seeds from cultivars such as ‘Lilac and Burgundy’ may not come true from seed. Penstemons can be hybridised quite easily.
Other useful information
The genus name Penstemon, sometimes also spelt as Pentstemon, is thought to refer to ‘five stamens’.