Follow by Email

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Rock Garden

Penstemon virens is in bloom! It’s a lovely purple gem on the Berry Prairie, but it blooms even better on the rocks of our patio. These rocks—and those all across campus—were collected in the hills to the east of Laramie, and came with their own rock gardens! 

Blue Mist Penstemon (Penstemon virens)

Penstemon is a large genus of wildflowers with snapdragon-like flowers, usually in red, pink, purple or blue. The Berry Prairie is home to five species, one of which white—an atypical color for penstemons. More on that one later—its buds are still small.  “Virens” means green, a reference to the shiny, dark green leaves of P. virens. Despite its relatively small size (usually less than 10”), it provides lots of color this time of year because it’s both abundant and floriferous. It can be grown easily from seed, if you want it in your garden, and can sometimes be found at nurseries, too.

Our rock gardens include more than P. virens:  A quick sampling includes a currant bush, a groundsel, and a scientist on lunch break!

Groundsel growing with penstemon virens

Current bush in the rock

Homo sapien amongst the vegetation

Written by Dorothy Tuthill, Biodiversity Institute


No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave us your feedback here!