Penstemon ‘Swan Lake’
Growing: Penstemon ‘Swan Lake’
– Height with flowers: 80cm. approx.
– Width: Upright bushy growth to a diameter of 45cm approx.
– Position: Full Sun to Part Shade.
– Soil: Enjoys well drained soil, as it will not tolerate wet soils over winter.
Actually it will flower better in soils that are not too rich.
And It is quite tolerant of poorer, gravel and sandy soils.
– Water: Penstemons are a great deal more dry hardy than their refined appearance suggests. They are in fact excellent water-saving plants for water conscious gardeners.
– Fragrance: None.
– Frost: Very hardy to at least -10C and below.
– Growth: Evergreen bushy perennial.
Loved by Wildlife
– Beneficial for wildlife: Native honey-eating birds, bees, butterflies and other useful pollinators, revel in collecting nectar and pollen from the trumpet flowers.
– Care: Easy care & low maintenance. Prune older stems that have finished flowering hard, at the end of winter, to encourage fresh, repeat flowering new stems to come from the base.
– Deer & Rabbit resistant: Usually not first choice for these pests.
An interesting History
– Origin: Native to North America. Where Penstemons grow in a range of habitats, but often in prairie environments. Although lovely ‘Strawberries & Cream’ was an accidental seedling produced by the bees in our garden. Fortunately it flowered and was spotted before we had a chance to weed it out.
– Traditional uses: The North American Indians knew a thing or two about Penstemons, because they were such common plants in their natural world.
So First Nations peoples came to use Penstemons in their daily life.
They used woody Penstemon roots to treat toothache, pain and bleeding.
While blue Penstemon flowers were used to make blue dye for painting moccasins and leather clothing.