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Penstemon smallii

Penstemon smallii
Small's penstemon
Penstemon smallii

Common name Small's penstemon
Family plantaginaceae
Life cycle perennial (Z5-9)
Flowers lilac (May-June)
Size 18-24"
Light sun
Cultural notes ordinary garden soil
From seed provide 8-12 weeks cold treatment, then germinate at room temperature; do not exclude light
detailed seed-starting info below
Seed ripenslate July

Medium-sized upright penstemon. With so many different beard-tongues in our garden, they all start looking similar in bloom, but this is a nice one, giving us lots of flowers in its second year from seed.

Small's penstemon
Shiny, gently serrated leaves with pointy tips clasping the stem in opposite arrangement
Penstemon smallii
This one came from seed labeled as the cultivar 'Violet Dusk'. I can't tell a difference from the plain species.

We left this plant behind in our Pennsylvania garden (and wish it well); we don't grow it in Houston.

Read about all the penstemon species in our garden

Seed for this plant is included on my seed trade list

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Seed-starting details for this plant

  1. Seed from '02 trade. Baggy 35F (8w) - 70F (4%G, 10d)
  2. Seed from '04 garden. Baggy 35F (12w) - 70F with light (25%G, 3-13d)
  3. Seed from '04 garden. Baggy 35F (12w) - 70F (6d) - 70F with light (4w; no G)
  4. Seed from '07 trade. No luck with baggy treatment. Pot outside 12/3/07 - about 10 seedlings by April 10th
  5. Same seed as above. Baggy 35F (10w) - 70F with light (10%G, 2d)
  6. Seed from '10 trade. Baggy 70F with light (78%G, 9-15d)
    Baggy 35F (5w) - 70F with light (90%G, 3-6d)
  7. Seed 'Violet Dusk' from '10 trade. Baggy 35F (6w) - 70F with light (83%G, 6-8d)
  8. Seed from '11 garden, cold-stored through summer. Baggy 35F (6w) - 70F with light (80+%G, 3-7d)
  9. Seed from '11 garden, cold-stored. Baggy 35F (6w; many G, 6w) - 70F with light (90%G)

Low viability further decreases with age of seed. I wish they self-seeded for me.

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