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Elfin Pink Beard Tongue

Category:

A lovely penstemon with an earlier bloom time and a compact habit; gorgeous pink flowers rising above green foliage makes a beautiful visual impact when massed in the garden, along walkways, or in borders

Characteristics

Species:
barbatus
Other Species Names:
Elfin Pink Penstemon
Average Landscape Height:
8 inches (12 inches with the flowers)
Average Landscape Width:
12 inches
Genus:
Penstemon
Cultivar:
Elfin Pink
Branching:
herbaceous
Plant Form:
upright spreading
Canopy:
low
Growth Rate:
fast
Pruning:
spring cleanup
Spacing:
8 inches
Flower Color:
pink
Flower Form:
tubular
Flower Period:
from late spring to early summer
Summer Foliage Color:
green
Maximum Light:
full sun
Minimum Light:
partial shade
Maximum Moisture:
average
Minimum Moisture:
dry
Pollution Tolerance:
medium

Ornamental Features

Elfin Pink Beard Tongue has masses of beautiful spikes of pink tubular flowers rising above the foliage from late spring to early 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.

Landscape Attributes

Elfin Pink 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.

Planting & Growing

Elfin Pink Beard Tongue will grow to be about 8 inches tall at maturity extending to 12 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. As an herbaceous perennial, this plant will usually die back to the crown each winter, and will regrow from the base each spring. Be careful not to disturb the crown in late winter when it may not be readily seen!

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 is a selection of a native North American species. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.

Elfin Pink 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.

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