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perennial

Grand Mesa Beard Tongue

Penstemon mensarum

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Grand Mesa Beard Tongue (Penstemon mensarum) at Echter's Nursery & Garden Center

Penstemon mensarum flowers

Penstemon mensarum flowers

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Plant Height:  12 inches

Flower Height:  18 inches

Spacing:  8 inches

Sunlight:  full sun  partial shade 

Hardiness Zone:  4a

Other Names:  Tiger Beard Tongue, Beardtongue

Description:

An outstanding variety with a tidy habit; brilliant blue flowers rising above green foliage makes a blazing visual impact when massed in the garden, along walkways, or in borders

Ornamental Features

Grand Mesa Beard Tongue has masses of beautiful spikes of sky blue tubular flowers with violet overtones rising above the foliage from late spring to late summer, which are most effective when planted in groupings. The flowers are excellent for cutting. Its narrow leaves remain green in color throughout the season. The fruit is not ornamentally significant.

Landscape Attributes

Grand Mesa Beard Tongue is an herbaceous perennial with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its relatively fine texture sets it apart from other garden plants with less refined foliage.

This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and is best cleaned up in early spring before it resumes active growth for the season. It is a good choice for attracting butterflies and hummingbirds to your yard. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Grand Mesa Beard Tongue is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Mass Planting
  • Border Edging
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Grand Mesa Beard Tongue will grow to be about 12 inches tall at maturity extending to 18 inches tall with the flowers, with a spread of 12 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 8 inches apart. It grows at a fast rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years.

This plant does best in full sun to partial shade. It prefers dry to average moisture levels with very well-drained soil, and will often die in standing water. It is considered to be drought-tolerant, and thus makes an ideal choice for a low-water garden or xeriscape application. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This species is native to parts of North America. It can be propagated by division.

Grand Mesa Beard Tongue is a fine choice for the garden, but it is also a good selection for planting in outdoor pots and containers. It is often used as a 'filler' in the 'spiller-thriller-filler' container combination, providing a mass of flowers against which the larger thriller plants stand out. Note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

 
 
Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Characteristics
Massing  Edging  Garden  Container 
Applications
Flowers  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features

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