Penstemon grandiflorus Prairie Jewel lights up my spring xeriscape.
I wasn’t sold on Prairie Jewel the first year I planted it. It grew too tall and I didn’t like the way it towered over the other plants in the garden. It also leaned over and I couldn’t prop it up.
I hate to admit it, but at the end of that first season, I pulled it up.
Fortunately for me, it had already reseeded itself in another bed and made an appearance the following spring. I’m so glad it did. It must have received too much water in its first planting because it sure doesn’t get much moisture in its new spot.
The plant starts as a clump of silvery leaves and then the flower spikes shoot up from the center. The tubular flowers are very attractive to bees because there’s a nice landing pad that directs them straight to the pollen.
The blooms on this variety of Beard-tongue are white, but they also come in lavender, pink and dark purple.