Several Plant Id's Please =)

vlselz(5a)June 16, 2014

**There are 2 separate plants 1 plant pic is listed on the message the other as a URL link**Sorry dont know how to post both pics!
One plant was seen at my Father In laws house which is in castle Rock area near a trail by his home (looks a little like a delphinium of sorts, hopefully you can zoom in). the plant had beautiful purple flowers on it (i couldn't get to close because each flower had a bee butt sticking out and my kid was w/ me and I didn't want to disturb them + I'm allergic =(. Its the main picture) The other plant self seeded itself by my old squash bed and water drain. Friends have some in their yards too and it hasn't flowered yet for them either. I swear I saw some just like it at the swap in May, Skybird did you have something like it?...maybe not & I'm crazy (wouldn't be the first.. haha) The second picture of the unknown weed or flower Is posted as a link below.
Hopefully I post the pics right. sorry I'm long winded!! :)


Here is a link that might be useful: weed or flower?

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mstywoods(z5, Westminster, CO)

The flower is Penstemon, I believe. I got a plant ID from Skybird on the one in my yard - thread:

Not sure what the other is, but looks familiar/pretty sure I have some in my yard! Will be interested to see if anyone can ID it.


    Bookmark   June 16, 2014 at 6:33PM
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Thanks for the response. I actually got an unknown variety of Penstemon from "Skybird" at the swap in May, so now I'm very excited to see what it will become...YAY!! A lot of people have this other plant/weed in their area so it will be nice to find out so I can tell everyone =)

Thanks again

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 1:13AM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

Hi Veronica,

Saw your post earlier today and didn't have time to answer! Glad Misty showed up to tell you what the first one is! I don't think the "unknown" Penstemons I had at the swap were the purple Rocky Mountain Penstemon, I'm pretty sure they'll wind up being a pink or orange one with much smaller flowers. I let one of the seedlings grow so I'll know in the future what they are, and I believe it'll bloom at least a little bit this year! Am planning to post--somewhere--what color it is if/when it blooms!

Can't be sure the one in the pic is Rocky Mountain, but it looks like it could be, and if it's growing out in the wild that's the most likely one. If you want some, watch those plants for when the seeds ripen and collect some, then winter sowing some of them would probably be the easiest way to start them! (I didn't have any of the Rocky Mountain Penstemon, Penstemon strictus, at the swap--just the "unknown" one!)

When I tried to look at your second pic it took me to a FB sign in page---and I only sign in to FB once a year---or less!---and right now is not gonna be one of those rare times when I decide to visit the Black Hole! Can you post the actual pic here via the GW system so I can see it here? Will try to help if I can!


    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 1:33AM
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Thanks for the reply Skybird, I'm excited to see my "unknown" plant flower when it does I will be sure to post pics. I am still new to gardening as well as this forum, so Im not sure how to post more than one pic but I will try. Thanks for any help you can give to what it is, sure is a little bugger ;) Also you say watch the seeds "ripen" is there a specific time this happens and does it look different than it does now..(sorry big time newbie)

Veronica =)

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 4:45PM
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Oops here is the close up of said weed/flower =) Sorry


    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 4:47PM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

Hi Veronica,

I don't know what it's called, but the second one is definitely a weed! Many years ago, 15+, I found one growing in my yard at the time and decided to let it grow to see what it was. When it finally "bloomed" it had what's called "insignificant flowers." As a matter of fact, they were so "insignificant" there was nothing I could really even call flowers! It is definitely not an "ornamental!" I recommend losing it before it has a chance to produce seeds! And I hope somebody around here does know what it is, 'cause I've always wondered!

I was surprised how hard it was to find a pic of the seed pods for P. strictus, but I found the site linked below. Check it out--top right pic. The "red pods" in that pic will eventually turn brown and dry, the top of each pod will open, and small, flattish, brown seeds will easily fall out. I can't tell you exactly when! You'd just kind of need to keep an eye on their "progress." When they're brown and dry you can cut off some of the seed pod stems and stick them in a PAPER bag and let them sit a week or two to be sure they're all the way dry and then shake the bag and most of the seed should fall out. Or if the seeds are already easily falling out when you get there, just take a bag along and bend the stems over and shake them into the bag--paper is still best for a while until you can be sure they completely dry, and then you can put them in a small zipper plastic bag. If you cut/get them before the pods are mostly brown/dry, they may not have developed completely enough to germinate, so best to wait till at least some of them are starting to fall out easily.

With the pictures, I used to have a really good answer, but I can't help you anymore! I use Picasa (for editing) and Picasa WebAlbums (for posting), and since I've had it for a long time I can still use it the way it was originally developed. BUT, the WebAlbums part, the part you use to get the links for posting, is now connected to google+, it's VERY different from the original, and as near as I can tell it's not very useful anymore! (If you have an OLD gmail account that is NOT associated with google+, I think you may still be able to use the old version of WebAlbums, but not positive about that. If you have ever created a google+ account, I don't believe you can use the old version!) What you need to get links to post pics here (unless you know how to create the "code" yourself!) is a "photo hosting site." Two of those, besides Picasa, are PhotoBucket and Flickr, but I happen to think both of those are awful--just my opinion, lots of people use them.

Since GW has quite recently made it possible to post a pic thru the site, that may be the easiest way for you to do it for now at least! And, yes, apparently you can only post one pic at a time, but you can just do as many posts as you need to to get all the pics in!

We're all glad to have Newbies around here, and we're glad you found us! Don't be afraid to ask any and all questions! There's a reason why this is The Friendliest Little Gardening Forum in The West! The only dumb question, if you don't already know the answer, is the one you don't ask!

Seeds are fun! Hope you manage to get some from the Penstemon!


Here is a link that might be useful: Penstemon strictus seed pods

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 7:10PM
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I love this forum, everyone is so nice & inviting, thanks SO much Skybird!! I have collected the seeds from Chives before and it sounds a little close to that.. so I think I can manage =) As for the pictures, i do have Gmail/Google +, I just couldn't figure out what to do with it all. If anything I don't mind adding pictures 1 at a time I just wanted to make sure there wasn't something I was missing and I just didnt know the"trick"

Thanks again Mstywoods & Skybird, I will go YANK that "flower"

Veronica =)

    Bookmark   June 17, 2014 at 7:44PM
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You have probably already looked at pictures of Rocky Mt Penstemom (the Penstemon strictus that Skybird mentioned), but I thought I'd post a picture of mine so you could compare. I just took it, and it's a tad cloudy today whereas your photo looks like it was in full sun. But yours still look a tad more "true" blue than mine, and there is another variety of Penstemon called Penstemon mensarum that has a beautiful truly blue color. They are hard to find, and mine died on me. :-( if I have a picture of it here on my iPad, I'll post it in another post. I'm still fighting with Picasa. :/

You can see from my photo how prolific the strictus are, and they will definitely reseed.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 1:44PM
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jaliranchr(z5 EC CO)

Your weed is horseweed, vlselz. Very common and very annoying. Pulls easily, thankfully.

Now, you know, skybird. ;)

This post was edited by jaliranchr on Sat, Jun 21, 14 at 23:45

    Bookmark   June 21, 2014 at 10:57PM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

Thank you, Jali!!! I, seriously, have always wondered what that stuff was! I know I won't remember it, so I saved a wikipedia link to/about it! Yes, it does at least have a very shallow root system and is easy to pull out. Does that make it a "good" weed? Maybe a "less evil than many" weed!

Your Penstemon strictus is wonderful, Kat! Mine never looks that good because of limited sun--and too much water because of the other things planted near it! But it sure is pretty when it blooms, just wish it lasted longer.

Veronica, the "seed pods" are VERY different on chives (from Penstemon), but the theory is exactly the same! Wait for some "little black things" to start falling out of the "whatever" and get some! I'm sure you'll figure it out!


P.S. Kat, I have discovered that what color a particular flower has in a picture is VERY much dependent on the the camera being used in addition to light conditions. I have several "pocket size" digital cameras by now, and it's amazing how much the color can "change," depending on which camera I'm using. When I'm out trippin' I like to take sunset pics, and some of the cameras are virtually useless. When the P. strictus is blooming in my yard I'd say (eyeball color!) it's about halfway between the color of Veronica's above and yours. Sure wish there was some way to get "real" color in pics!

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 12:25AM
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