Penstemon in Alabama

madabouteu(8A - central Alabama)May 12, 2008

When I was living in the New Mexico Rockies, I became very fond of the red penstemons that were common there - even growing on the roadsides in town!! The ones we have here are not as spectacular, being pale to medium purple, but are still very nice to have. I have been growing them for a year now. Last year I had single plants of P. calycosus and P. tenuis; this year they have formed clumps, especially calycosus, and are in bloom right now. P. 'Husker Red', whose foliage is burgundy but whose flowers are pale purple, survive the winter and also has started to clump but seems to bloom later. I've not seen hummers around them yet, but they are obviously well suited to be hummer plants.

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sinai(7b/Alabama)

I got a 'Husker's Red' blooming right now...two year old plantg and its really took off this year, size wise....Hummers around here are on the nest I guess, but they haven't been around in the last week or so.....

Paul from Alabama

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 2:44PM
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loveofmylife680(z7)

Paul, Is that it on the laft side of your pic.?
Jill

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 7:04PM
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tweetypye(z8/sc AL)

Jill, to answer your question since Paul hasn't yet...the Husker Red Penstemon is the one on the left of his photo with the dark foliage and light flowers. The one on the right is a salvia...I forget the name, but I'm sure Paul will tell you when he reads this. :) Aren't they both so pretty though? I had some of the HRP once, but lost it to the drought last year. I may need to get some more. LOL
Jan

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 9:35PM
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madabouteu(8A - central Alabama)

I bought my Husker Red at a Lowe's store last summer. I believe I bought the calycolus and tenuis at the BBG sale. This year I got seed of P. tenuis through the seed exchange forum, and had great germination.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 9:49PM
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sinai(7b/Alabama)

Howdy....Ever tried to do something in the garden at 8 p.m. in May?...Don't....:)
Jill.....Jan is right, Husker's Red is on the right....but if you look close I have another one, a younger one on the left at the foot of the Salvia microphylla 'Hot Lips', you can just make out the dark foliage around the top....

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 9:59PM
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tweetypye(z8/sc AL)

Paul, I really like that "Hot Lips" salvia...do you know where you got it...locally or mail order? Does it bloom all summer? I'll bet the hummingbirds are crazy about it.
Jan

    Bookmark   May 12, 2008 at 10:46PM
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sinai(7b/Alabama)

Morning Jan....I got it at Petals from the Past in Jemison, Ala....I got one two years ago and last year got another one.....It's bi-colored as you can see...depending on the temperture it'll have solid white or red petals on occasion.....when the temps are just right it'll have it 'Hot Lips' coloration,,,,,it's nice the little 'lip' on the flower petal is white, surrounded by the red...It's the most 'erotic' flower I have other than 'Pigs Feet"......:)

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 7:23AM
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sinai(7b/Alabama)

Whoops.....sorry bout that, fogot, it does bloom all the time from spring as you can see till fall......I give it a little hair cut in early spring and it came back like gangbusters.....and hummingbirds hit it first seems like....haven't seen any hummers lately, the last few days....I read onetime they go to their nests and kinda disappear for a while...don't know if that's true or not...the person that wrote that might know as much about what they're talking about as me......:)

Paul from Alabama

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 7:33AM
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tweetypye(z8/sc AL)

Thanks Paul, I was wondering if Petals From The Past might have it. I haven't been up there in a while, but may need to make a trip soon. :)
As for the hummers, I think the first ones we see each spring are just passing through on their way to locations farther north. The ones that stay here for nesting are later in coming, or at least that's what I've been told. I could be wrong too...lol...but like you, I'm not seeing many at the moment. Had lots of them a couple of weeks back.
Thanks for the info on that salvia.
Jan

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 7:57AM
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tedevore(7b Al)

Jan,

You might want to check Lowes. I saw today they had "hot lips" salvia
(at the location not far from oak mountain in b'ham.)

They also had African Iris or fortnight lily (dietes vegeta.) I have never seen that on sale around here.

Todd

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 9:19PM
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tweetypye(z8/sc AL)

Oh thanks Todd, I'll have to go check tomorrow....at the local Lowes. I've never seen the African Iris around here either. Maybe my local store will have them too. :)
Jan

    Bookmark   May 13, 2008 at 9:35PM
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