(Penstemon spp, Scrophulariaciae Figwort Family)

Penstemon barbatus




Pink "Firecracker"
Penstemon Caryi
Penstemon aridus
P. attenuatus
Scarlet Penstemon other names: Golden-Beard Penstemon, Beardlip Pen, Red Pens,Southwestern Pen, Hummingbird Flowers
Penstemon pseudospectabilis (red)
Penstemon barnebyi (purple-mauve)
Penstemon eatonii (slim brilliant red)
Penstemon parryi (Magenta)
pseudospectabilis (Rose coloured)
Pale pink (bees)
Penstemon garnet flower
Penstemon whippleanus (warm mauve)
Whipple's penstemon
Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red'
Penstemon barbatus 'Prairie Dusk' (mauve with stripe)
Penstemon heterophyllus ssp. australis (Foothill Penst) purple
Penstemon rupicola (magenta purple, rock hugging creeper)
Hot Rock Penstemon (Penstemon deustus). (white with tiny red stripes)
Shrubby Penstemon - Penstemon fruticosus
Sierra Penstemon (Penstemon heterodoxus) hairy, purple (dark when closed)
Penstemon speciosus sky or Iris blue and white aka Royal Penstemon,
Penstemon cyananthus /purple
Penstemon heterodoxus cyclamen purple
Penstemon heterophyllus brilliant almost royal blue
Penstemon procerus blue mauve white in fluffy clusters
Penstemon rostriflorus smaller ribbed red scarlet
Penstemon angustifolius Nutt. ex. Pursh., narrow leaf penstemon magenta, deep clusters
Dusty Penstemon (Penstemon comarrhenus) aka Dusty Beardtongue, Pin-striped Penstemon paler blue
Penstemon heterophyllus Margarita BOP: Deeper brilliant blue
Penstemon davidsonii x menziesii / pale pinkish violet, puffy flowers
Penstemon 'Hidcote' rose, red and white
Penstemon centranthifolius brilliant lipstick red, flower like lipstick vine
Penstemon tenuis, the "Gulf-coast penstemon." Texas variety wildflower/ pale rose violet
Penstemon nitidus glabrous almost succulent leaf: blue wildflower
Penstemon deustus
(About 200 types of Penstemon, in fact)


Penstemon means "Five Stamens", Botanical name (Beardtongue) from Latin barba and barbatus (beard)

Found growing in profusion is the South West of the United States, and prefers clay sloping habitat.

Torreys' Penstemon: used as a charm on "rabbit sticks", thrown by Zuni hunters; Penstemon chewed and spit in to the palm of the hand and then rubbed was "sure to kill any rabbit".

REF: Item 56, Page 617, Native American Ethnobotany By Daniel E. Moerman : Available Timbers, Amazon, Chapters.Indigo Canada copyright 1998 Timber Press Inc.

Native American Medicine, traditional use:

Used as a poultice for swellings, gun and arrow wounds,eyewash; tea used for constipation,stomach ache, internal injuries, bronchitis, kidney problems and whooping cough.

Navaho: med for sheeps' broken bones


iridoid glycosides, anthocyanins,phenolic acids,five valeriana-type esterified glucoiridoids which consist of penstemide, serrulatoloside, 8-epi-valerosidate, 7-desoxy-8-epi-valerosidate and serrulatoside.

Traces of four non-esterified glucoiridoids, i.e. harpagide, aucuboside, loganine and plantarenaloside


menstrual pain, stomachache, wounds, swellings and coughs; largely wound healing, used for minor irritations like stings, bites, rashes, sunburn and poorly healing tissue, external use.

Potential antitumor activity* against the P-388 lymphocytic leukemia cells

Roots chewed for toothache pain,tea for fever and chills.


CAUTION : Chelone glabra [variant spelling "celone"]named "Balmony" is sometimes mistakenly sold from nurseries as Penstemon barbatus.

Balmony is also a Figwort, but it is used as an extremely bitter herb eg a liver tonic.

Ref: Earthnotes

Know your recipes amounts well before making any herb medicine. No available references

Almond and Penstemon Skin Salve

Fresh leaves mixed with sweet almond,apricot kernel or olive oil (3 types of oil) can be used as a skin salve for irritations of outer skin, lips, and anus .

*To Companions Article: LINK HERE

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