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 Post subject: Penstemons
PostPosted: Sun Feb 04, 2007 9:58 am 
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Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2006 9:10 pm
Posts: 38
Location: colorado
some resources:
Professor Andrea D.Wolfe's Penstemon site:
http://www.biosci.ohio-state.edu/~awolfe/Penstemon/Penstemon.html

a couple of seed sources:http://www.plantsofthesouthwest.com/
Granite Seed Company-but I'll also have to refer to one of their earlier catalogs(as P.ambiguus isn't listed in their current catalog). For examples:soil texture;soil pH ratings;plant communities;distribution;annual precipitation, elevation guidelines...

... experiences growing P.ambiguus from seed...I wasn't quite satisfied with native plant nurseries' cultural approaches with regard to this species, so I studied small populations of P.ambiguus out in the desert before attemping to grow from self collected seed...
I was also influenced by a (1992) Proceedings Publication article written by Carol Miller and Mark Holden:Propagating Desert Plants...available online....


Last edited by pickwick on Sun Feb 04, 2007 3:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 04, 2007 3:36 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 03, 2007 8:36 pm
Posts: 6
Location: Northern Ohio
We grew penstemon from seed for the first time last year. Wow! I wasn't sure about where they would do best so I planted them in about a dozen different places around the yard. They did well everywhere I put them. A few got virtually lost among the other plants around them until fall. As the others faded, the penstemon gave these gorgeous, delicate touches of color to the bed. We have cardwellii. After having such a good experience with our first lot and going to the OSU website, I am now eager to try more varieties. Thank you so much.

In December, they were the only green thing left in some of the beds. Are they perennial? Will they re-seed themselves?

_________________
Kelley & Nick G


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Feb 04, 2007 4:04 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 06, 2006 9:10 pm
Posts: 38
Location: colorado
hello kelleynickg;Tom Clothier's commendable germination database contains a good amount of information pertaining to the germination of Penstemon species (You are probably aware of his site, but should be listed anyway)...

http://tomclothier.hort.net/

re: P.ambiguus; roots object to confinement at the early developmental stages(imo);(transplants:~6-8 imo, centered per one gallon containers: combination of sand/perlite>roots out very well in this media:(ref:C.Miller;M.Holden)however, watch water management;(sensitive to my low EC rated synthetic ferts, hence discontinued);morning sun exposure rooting out, then outplanted:(sand prewetted/allowed to dry a bit:~48hrs) with a post hole digger/no compost-a bit of low analysis organic fert;a bit of a humus based amendment(i.e.Gro-Power); some arroyo sand to aid water percolation; *sun shades to acclimation...
Granite Seed rated this species performing best with medium coarse-medium soil texture;neutral soil pH;low minimum moisture requirements;naturally occuring from 4,000-6,500 ft. ;mesas and sandy sites;....distribution maps available at the **USDA/NRCS site...This species did reseed to a minor extent under my harsh conditions...Seedlings occasionally watered and pricked out at the appropriate time to one gallon containers for another go round...I also used a very sharp serrated sickle for pruning established plantings...as my annual precipitation <10 inches,and drought years less...Plants performed better held in check, integrated with timed summer waterings.

...desert dwellers might be interested in the exceptional work conducted by USGS Biologist Jayne Belnap and her colleagues (i.e) Microbial Ecology(2002)43:13-25;Temporal Variation in Community Composition,Pigmentation,and Fv/Fm of Desert Cyanobacterial Soil Crusts ( M.A. Bowker,S.C. Reed,J.Belnap,S.L Phillips) available online...

*re:(fabricated) "sun shades": cut, weathered aspen erosion control blanket sections (netting attached) secured to short wired fence sections yielding a high inverted U,staked with 8 inch metal pins shielding sun ~11am-2pm to acclimation:~2weeks.Prefer the rated green netting over the rated black netting.The rated black netting did not photodegrade-my own conclusion and a nuisance for me...

**See related Taxa:USDA/NRCS site:http://plants.usda.gov/index.html


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