Scrophulariaceae
Penstemon fruticosus

Shrubby Penstemon

Sprawling mat to 36 in. across, hairless, lower stems woody. Leaves lance-shaped, saw-toothed, with pointed tips. Flowers lavender or blue-purple, to 2 in. long, lower lip with 2 deep folds, golden hairs on inner parts near mouth. Grows in well-drained places at low to alpine elevations. Var. scouleri is smaller, with very narrow, slightly toothed leaves; grows in northeastern Washington and adjacent British Columbia. Var. serratus is the smallest form, with almost round, prominently serrate leaves; found near Snake River. Var. fruticosus leaves are wider, up to 2 1/2 in. long, 1/2 in. wide. All varieties are generally larger and have longer flower stems than P. davidsonii, with which they can be confused.

  • Rarity: Locally Common
  • Flowering Time: All Summer
  • Life Cycle: Perennial
  • Height: 12 inches
  • Habitat: East-Side Forest, Shrub-Steppe, Alpine
  • Found In: East Gorge, Mt. Rainier NP, Wallowas, Great Basin, N Cascades NP
  • Native: Yes