Davidson's penstemon: Penstemon davidsonii var. davidsonii)
Davidson's penstemon is an attractive, low, mat-forming penstemon. Its flowering stems are less than 10 to 15 cm tall. It is a shrubby penstemon. The leaves are largely basal, elliptical to almost round, to 1.5 cm long. The leaves are green, hairless, and somewhat thick. There are some stem leaves, but these are much smaller.
The inflorescence is a compact, few-flowered raceme. The sepals are green, and narrow to ovate in shape. The corolla is blue to lavender or purple and up to 4 cm in length. The tube is noticeably keeled on the top and glabrous on the outside with the 2-ridged palate sparsely to densely bearded The calyx consists of 5 sepals from 7-15 mm longwith obtuse to acute tips. The anther sacs are white-woolly and they fully split. The staminode is about one-half the length of the tube and bearded at the tip.
Variety davidisonii: The corolla is 2-3.6 cm long. The leaf tips are rounded to blunt. The leaves are spatulate or broadest near the tips and the margins are entire. Found in the southern Washington Cascades south through the Cascades of Oregon to southwestern Oregon and northern California.
Variety menziesii: The corolla is 2-3.6 cm long. The leaf tips are rounded to blunt. The leaves are lanceolate and broadest below the middle of the blade with slightly to noticeably serrate margins. Found on southern Vancouver Island, in the Olympic Mts., and the Cascades of northern Washington.
Variety praeteritus: The corolla is 3.4-4.5 cm long. The leaf tips are sharp. Endemic to Steens Mt. in southeastern Oregon.
Davidson's penstemon is found in talus or rocky outcrops in high mountain or alpine areas.
Davidson's penstemon is found from coastal British Columbia south to the Olympic Mountains, then south through the Cascades to the Sierra Nevada of California. A population is also found at high altitude on Steens Mountain, Oregon.
Above and at right is Davidson's penstemon (var. davidsonii), Langille Crags, Mt Hood Wilderness........July 3, 1992.