Flowers are paired in upper leaf bracts.  East Hemet, Riverside County, CA. 7-4-11. © Peter J. Bryant

Showy Penstemon

Penstemon spectablis ssp. spectabilis

A fairly common erect perennial shrub up to 1 meter high with several stems from the base.   It can be found on dry rocky slopes, chaparral and sometimes coastal sage scrub in the Santa Ana Mountains.  It is more common after fire and in recently disturbed areas.  It is adapted for pollination by both bees and hummingbirds, with purplish flowers and a long corolla tube that is wide enough to admit bees, but it is not as nectar rich as the typical hummingbird food source. It is a popular native in gardens for its beauty and attraction to pollinators.

Plantaginaceae

Back to Plantaginaceae of Orange County, California
Back to Eudicots of Orange County, California
Back to Natural History of Orange County, California


East Hemet, Riverside County, CA. 7-4-11. © Peter J. Bryant

San Mateo Wilderness, Riverside Co., CA. 7-4-11
. © Joan Avise

Four stamens, prominent smooth staminode. Riley Wilderness Park, Coto de Caza, CA. cultivated. © Joan Avise

Upper leaves united at the base. Riley Wilderness Park, Coto de Caza, CA. cultivated. © Joan Avise

Calyx deeply 5-parted. Riley Wilderness Park, Coto de Caza, CA. cultivated. © Joan Avise

Riley Wilderness Park, Coto de Caza, CA. cultivated. © Joan Avise
 
San Mateo Wilderness, Riverside Co., CA. 7-4-11. © Joan Avise