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Herbaceous Perennial

Penstemon 'Windsor Red'
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

penstemon 'Windsor Red'

A semi-evergreen herbaceous perennial, 75cm high, with green leaves, and many rich red flowers with red and white throats from early summer to late autumn

Synonyms
Penstemon 'Cottage Garden Red'
Penstemon 'Garden Red'

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Size
Ultimate height
0.5–1 metres
Time to ultimate height
2–5 years
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Chalk
Loam
Sand
Moisture
Moist but well–drained
pH
Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green
Summer Red Green
Autumn Red Green
Winter Green
Position
  • Full sun
  • Partial shade
Aspect

West–facing or East–facing or South–facing

Exposure
Sheltered
Hardiness
H5
Botanical details
Family
Plantaginaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Semi evergreen
Habit
Clump forming
Genus

Penstemon may be deciduous or evergreen perennials or subshrubs, with simple, narrow leaves and racemes or panicles of bell-shaped or funnel-shaped flowers in summer and early autumn

Name status

Accepted

How to grow

Cultivation

Grow in fertile, well-drained soil in full sun or partial shade. In cold areas, protect plant overwinter with a dry winter mulch. See penstemon cultivation for further advice

Propagation

Propagate by softwood cuttings in early summer or semi-ripe cuttings in midsummer, by division in spring, or by layering

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Coastal
  • Gravel garden
  • Prairie planting
  • Wildlife gardens
  • Flower borders and beds
  • Cut flowers
  • Wall side borders
Pruning

Deadhead to encourage a longer flowering season; in autumn, cut plants down to about a third of their height to prevent windrock but leave some protection from frosts; in late spring or early summer after new growth appears and after frosts are over, cut out old stems

Pests

May be susceptible to slugs and snails, and by chrysanthemum eelworm

Diseases

Generally disease-free but may be affected by powdery mildews and grey moulds

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