Growing Penstemon

Latest Update 6th May 2017.

Golden Beard Penstemon.
  • Binomial Name:                                       Penstemon Barbatus. 
  • Family:                                                    Plantaginaceae.
  • Garden bed type:                                     Drip line irrigated. 
  • Plant Spacings (centres):                          1000mm. 
  • Climate:                                                  Warm Temperate.
  • Geography:                                              Southern Hemisphere. 
  • Penstemons are small short lived herbaceous shrubs and grow well in my clay based organic soil.  They are very hardy and my weekly hour watering by drip irrigation in summer provides plenty of water during their growing season.
  • After they finish flowering in late autumn, I cut them back hard and after clearing old mulch and debris, apply 60mm of homemade compost covered with straw mulch.
  • Dead flowers are removed right down to the base of the stem to encourage new growth during the summer.
  • After a few years, when its vigour reduces, I propagate new plants by root division in late autumn. 
  • I have had Golden beard Penstemon for many years and I love their subtle dark pink flowers.
Growing Conditions:
  • Full sun.   
  • Minimise soil disturbances to maintain a natural soil structure.  
Feed the Soil.  
  • In late autumn, remove old mulch, fallen leaves and other decaying organic material.  Dispose of them in the compost heap.
  • Remove dead or diseased flower stems and reduce the height of the remaining foliage.
  • Apply a top dressing of home made compost to the surrounding soil at a rate of 60 litres /M2.  
  • Cover with fresh straw mulch. 
Growing Instructions  
  • Propagate Mexican sage by root division in late autumn.
  • Prepare the soil in the intended position and plant the new plant.  Water it in well with dilute seaweed extract.
  • Apply a monthly foliar spray of aerated compost tea when the rest of the ornamental plants are sprayed.
Potential Pests
  • My Penstemons have been always been pest free in my garden
  • Regular foliar sprays of aerated compost tea should deter most airborne pests and diseases.
  • An annual application of home made compost and aerated compost extract on the soil helps control soil borne pests.

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