[Beardtongues and Penstemons: The Genus Penstemon East of the Cascade Mts. of Oregon and Washington]

Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon

Penstemon pennellianus

Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

The photo above shows Blue Mountain penstemon as photographed at Bald Mt. along Tollgate Lane in the Umatilla N.F........June 27, 2006.

Close-up of the anthers of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianusThe photo at right shows a close-up of the anther sacs of Blue Mt. penstemon as seen along Tollgate Lane in the Umatilla National Forest........June 27, 2006. One can clearly seen the narrow opening in each anther sac, which splits about 2/3 of its length.


Characteristics:

Blue Mountain penstemon is an attractive perennial wildflower with several stout, erect stems which rise 20-60 cm from a rosette of large basal leaves. The basal leaves are fairly thick, shiny green, and with entire margins. The basal leaves are narrowly elliptic, tapering gradually to long petoles. They range from 8-25 cm long. The lower stem leaves are reduced in size, gradually increasing in size to mid stem where they are the largest. The upper leaves are again reduced in size. The stem leaves range from 6-9 cm long and are ovate with acute tips. The blades are sessile or clasping, with the bases of the leaf pairs often meetin around the stem.

The inflorescence is a panicle of 3-10 verticillasters which are widely spaced lower on the stem but more crowded upwards. The flower clusters are in the leaf axils and are usually 2-4 flowered. The corolla is blue or purplish and glabrous throughout. The corolla ranges from 25-33 mm in length. The sepals are lanceolate to ovate and tapered to acute to acuminate tips. Individual sepals are 5-9mm long with entire margins. The anthers are sparsely haired with short, straight hairs. The anther sacs split apart over the outer 2/3 of the sac. The sacs twist so that the anthers are S-shaped. The staminode is expanded slightly and short-bearded at the tip.


Habitat:

Blue Mt. penstemon is found on ridge tops in open forests or on open, rocky to gravelly slopes.


Range:

Blue Mt. penstemon is only found in the Blue Mts. of southeastern Washington and northern Wallowa County in northeastern Oregon.


Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

Blue Mountain penstemon blooming in the Umatilla National Forest on Bald Mountain several miles east of Tollgate, OR............June 29, 2012.

Inflorescence of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Inflorescence of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Inflorescence of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

Basal leaves of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Flower of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

Flower of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Reproductive flower parts of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Reproductive flower parts of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

Blue Mountain penstemon blooming along a trail in Fields Springs State Park, Asotin County, Washington..........June 11, 2013.

Close-up sideview of the flower of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

The photo above shows a close-up sideview of the corolla of Blue Mt. penstemon as seen at Bald Mt. in the Umatilla N.F...........June 26, 2006. Note the shiny, glabrous tube and lobes.

Close-up frontal view of the flower of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

The photo above shows of the mouth of the flower of Blue Mountain penstemon as photographed along Tollgate Lane at Bald Mt. in the Umatilla N.F...........June 27, 2006. Note the anther sacs and the lightly (yellow) bearded tip of the staminode resting on the palate of the opening.

Inflorescence of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

Blue Mountain penstemon blooming on the south-facing grasslands of Puffin Butte, Field Springs State Park, Asotin County, WA........June 2, 2017.

Mid-stem leaves of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

The photo above shows the sessile upper stem leaves of Blue Mt. penstemon from Bald Mt. in the Umatilla N.F..........July 6, 1999.

Basal leaf of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

The photo above shows the long basal leaves of Blue Mt. penstemon from Bald Mt. in the Umatilla N.F.........July 6, 1999.

Basal leaves of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Anthers of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

Close-up frontal view of the flower of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus - Internal flower parts of Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

The photos above show various close-up views of Blue Mt. penstemon as seen on the lower third of Hat Pt. Road in the Hells Canyon National Recreational Area........June 28, 2007.


Blue Mountain Beardtongue, Blue Mountain Penstemon, Pennell's Penstemon: Penstemon pennellianus

The photo above shows a single specimen of Blue Mt. penstemon from Bald Mt. along Tollgate Lane in the Umatilla N.F..........June 27, 2006.

Paul Slichter