Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Beardtongue, Beard Tongue
Penstemon barbatus 'Elfin Pink'

Family: Plantaginaceae
Genus: Penstemon (PEN-stem-on) (Info)
Species: barbatus (bar-BAY-tus) (Info)
Cultivar: Elfin Pink

3 vendors have this plant for sale.

3 members have or want this plant for trade.


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

15-18 in. (38-45 cm)

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)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:
Full Sun

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer


Other details:
This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds
Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Patent Information:
Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:
Unknown - Tell us

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

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4 positives
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive birder17 On Jan 1, 2012, birder17 from Jackson, MO (Zone 6b) wrote:

I have had this plant growing in my garden for at least seven years. It has grown larger with each year, covering about 24 inches. I love the true pink color. I have it on the north side of my house in almost full shade in clay soil. At the time, I planted it, I understood it to be planted in partial shade. Although it is growing nicely, it would probably do better in more sun and better drainage. This tells me this plant is pretty tough. It does grow prostrate due to its location. I have not been able to "find" any seeds on this plant.

Positive Eldine On May 20, 2011, Eldine from Wellsville, NY (Zone 4b) wrote:

I've had this plant a few years. It grows well in my zone 4 garden. Looks nice in the back and does better if surrounded by "heavier" plants as it has a tendency to flop, especially after a summer storm. The blooms are very pretty and feminine looking. I've transplanted it several times to find the best spot and it always does well. Likes full sun.

Positive mcrousse On May 20, 2009, mcrousse from Holly Springs, NC (Zone 7b) wrote:

I have 2 specimens of this plant. One is in full sun, and the other gets morning sun and dappled shade in the afternoon. I planted them early last spring and they both sat there and did nothing all year. They were in a non-clay soil which was well-drained. They got only a little supplemental irrigation. This spring (mid May) both are blooming happily, and the clump is actually growing. I think this plant needs time to get established and grow some good roots. Our summers are awfully hot and humid and it survived, even though it didn't look too good last year. Give this plant time to get going, even from a decent-sized nursery pot. The pretty pink blooms are worth it. I haven't seen the hummers look at it here but all they seem to like at my place are salvias.

Positive smiln32 On Dec 17, 2004, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

Flowers are long-lasting and trumpet-like. Beautiful pink color. Easy to grow in fertile, well-drained soil. I cut my Penstemon plants back to the top of the "ground height" foliage at the end of the season. Some recommendations are to cut the plant back right after flowering. It's supposed to attract hummingbirds, but I haven't seen any yet. :)


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

Aurora, Colorado
Colorado Springs, Colorado
Dover, Delaware
Cherry Valley, Illinois
Mount Prospect, Illinois
Plainfield, Illinois
Rockford, Illinois
Carmel, Indiana
Hebron, Kentucky
Dracut, Massachusetts
Jackson, Missouri
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Elba, New York
Mechanicville, New York
Holly Springs, North Carolina
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Bend, Oregon
Chiloquin, Oregon
Medford, Oregon
Santaquin, Utah
Charlottesville, Virginia
Kalama, Washington

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