Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Dwarf Hairy Penstemon
Penstemon hirsutus var. pygmaeus

Family: Plantaginaceae
Genus: Penstemon (PEN-stem-on) (Info)
Species: hirsutus var. pygmaeus

2 vendors have this plant for sale.

8 members have or want this plant for trade.

Alpines and Rock Gardens

under 6 in. (15 cm)

6-9 in. (15-22 cm)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)
USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)
USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)
USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

Sun Exposure:
Sun to Partial Shade

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:
White/Near White

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer


Other details:
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)
6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)
7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:

Propagation Methods:
From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall
From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

Seed Collecting:
Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

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By LilyLover_UT
Thumbnail #1 of Penstemon hirsutus var. pygmaeus by LilyLover_UT

By Baa
Thumbnail #2 of Penstemon hirsutus var. pygmaeus by Baa

By Todd_Boland
Thumbnail #3 of Penstemon hirsutus var. pygmaeus by Todd_Boland

By sanannie
Thumbnail #4 of Penstemon hirsutus var. pygmaeus by sanannie

By onewish1
Thumbnail #5 of Penstemon hirsutus var. pygmaeus by onewish1

By cinemike
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3 positives
1 neutral
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive sanannie On Dec 3, 2006, sanannie from White Lake, ON (Zone 4b) wrote:

A great dwarf plant for the rock garden. It's foliage is a very attractive reddish burgundy in the spring. It's easy to start from seed. It self seeds in the garden, but not to the point of invasiveness.

Positive Todd_Boland On Jan 22, 2005, Todd_Boland from St. John's, NL (Zone 5b) wrote:

This is a recommneded penstemon for the beginner and it does well in wetter areas where most penstemon are challenging. The foliage is tinted purple and makes a lovely backdrop for the light lavender-pink flowers. It will gently self-seed in the garden which is ideal as the plants are relatively short-lived. I've had this one for over 15 years.

Positive LilyLover_UT On Jan 17, 2005, LilyLover_UT from Ogden, UT (Zone 5b) wrote:

This is a lovely little penstemon for the rock garden. Give it well-drained soil. It's not too difficult to start from seed. I started mine indoors, then stratified them for 3 weeks.

Neutral Baa On Jul 2, 2002, Baa wrote:

Low growing, mat forming subshrub from the North Eastern region of North America.

Has evergreen, leance shaped, toothed, dark green leaves with a purple tinge. Bears tubular, slightly flattened, very pale lavender flowers with white throats.

Flowers June - July

Likes a poorish, well drained soil in sun. Dislikes hot sun (even wilts here in the UK) so some shade during the hottest part of the day may be required.

Very pretty little plant that flowers it's heart out.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Wasilla, Alaska
Reading, Massachusetts
Denville, New Jersey

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