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Wild Foxglove

Penstemon cobaea

Other common name(s):

Prairie Penstemon, Prairie Beardtongue, Foxglove Penstemon, Foxglove Beardtongue, False Foxglove, Large-flowered Penstemon, Large-flowered Beardtongue, Cobaea Penstemon, Cobaea Beardtongue,

Family:

Plantaginaceae (Plantain Family)

Plant Ecoregion Distribution Map

Central Great Plains, Chihuahuan Deserts, Cross Timbers, East Central Texas Plains, Edwards Plateau, Texas Blackland Prairies, Western Gulf Coastal Plain
Broken Red Plains, Limestone Plains, Red Prairie
Stockton Plateau
Carbonate Cross Timbers, Eastern Cross Timbers, Grand Prairie, Limestone Cut Plain, Western Cross Timbers
Bastrop Lost Pines, Floodplains and Low Terraces2, Northern Post Oak Savanna, Northern Prairie Outliers, San Antonio Prairie, Southern Post Oak Savanna
Balcones Canyonlands, Edwards Plateau Woodland, Llano Uplift, Semiarid Edwards Plateau
Floodplains and Low Terraces1, Northern Blackland Prairie, Southern Blackland Prairie
Flatwoods, Southern Tertiary Uplands

Plant Characteristics

Growth Form

Herbaceous

Height

1.5
to
2.5
ft.

Spread

1
to
1.5
ft.

Leaf Retention

Deciduous

Lifespan

Perennial

Habitat and Care Requirements

Soil Type(s)

Rocky, Calcareous

Light Requirement

Sun, Part Shade

Water Requirement

Low, Medium

Native Habitat

Grassland

Bloom and Attraction

Bloom Color

White, Pink

Bloom Season

Spring

Seasonal Interest

Nectar

Wildlife Benefit

Butterflies, Hummingbirds, Moths

Maintenance

Our native penstemon is not related to European foxglove. Spreads by rhizomes. Cut flower stalks when brown or wait for seeds. May go dormant in the summer depending on the region. Propagation: Seed, Root division.

Comments

Blooms April-June. Produces large showy tubular white, to light purple, flowers that line the stem. The leaves are paired and get smaller as they go up the stem. The lower leaves may wither while the plant is blooming. Attracts a variety of moths, butterflies, hummingbirds. Larval host: Dotted Checkerspot butterfly.
Previous Scientific Name(s): Synonym(s): Penstemon cobaea ssp. purpureus, Penstemon cobaea ssp. typicus, Penstemon cobaea var. purpureus

References

1) Griffith, Bryce, Omernick & Rodgers (2007). Ecoregions of Texas. 2) Miller, George O., Landscaping with Native Plants of Texas 2nd Ed., 2013, pg 48. 3) Wasowski and Wasowski, Native Texas Plants Landscaping Region by Region, 1991, pg. 200. 4) https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=PECO4. 5) https://portal.torcherbaria.org/portal/taxa/index.php?taxon=Penstemon+cobaea&formsubmit=Search+Terms. 6) http://bonap.net/TDC/Image/Map?taxonType=Species&taxonId=17241&locationType=County&mapType=Normal. 7) https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=33680#null