Dec. 3, 2021

Appalachian beardtongue, Penstemon smallii

I first saw these plants growing by a headquarters building in a preserve in southern Ohio. Couldn't tell if they were native or imported. Now we know they are from farther south, but have become one of the popular garden penstemons. Beardtongues are named for bearded stamens, adapted to attract pollinators to the other normally functional flower parts. Appalachian or Small's beardtongue grows in woodlands in AL, GA, NC, SC, and TN. Cultivated, Washtenaw Co MI, 6/8/21. Plantain family, Plantaginaceae.