Penstemon pruinosus Douglas ex Lindl.
Chelan penstemon (Chelan beardtongue)
Plantaginaceae (Mare's-tail family)
(Previously in Scrophulariaceae)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© Virginia Skilton     (Photo ID #24875)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Penstemon pruinosus
Click here to view the full interactive map and legend

Species Information

Perennial herb from a stout, branched, woody stem-base; stems several, clustered, ascending to erect, 10-40 cm tall, minutely sticky-hairy to merely short-hairy to smooth below, glandular-hairy in the inflorescence.
Opposite, usually distinctly saw-toothed, minutely sticky-hairy, sometimes greyish beneath, or rarely essentially smooth; basal leaves egg-shaped to lanceolate, 5-10 (15) cm long, 0.5-2 (3) cm wide, stalked, the stalks about as long as the blades; stem leaves well developed, 1.5-6 cm long, triangular-egg-shaped to lanceolate, mostly unstalked.
Inflorescence a leafy-bracted, rather narrow, terminal cluster of several compact whorls of stalked flowers; corollas deep blue, tubular, 1-1.6 cm long, 2-lipped, the lower lip larger than the upper, glandular-hairy on the outside, hairy inside at the throat; calyces 3-6 mm long, somewhat glandular-hairy, 5-lobed, the lobes nearly distinct, lanceolate to narrowly egg-shaped, slightly papery-margined, pointy-tipped; fertile stamens 4, the anthers smooth; sterile stamen bearded toward the scarcely expanded tip.
Capsules, 5-7 mm long, smooth or thinly short glandular-hairy; seeds numerous, about 1 mm long.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.


Ecological Framework for Penstemon pruinosus

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres)
678 445 1172
Slope Gradient (%)
39 1 70

Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]

214 140 270
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
2 1 4
Modal Nutrient Regime
# of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class

All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in

IDF(1), PP(6)

Habitat and Range

Dry sagebrush hillsides, grassy slopes, and open forests in the steppe and montane zones; infrequent in S BC east of the Coast-Cascade Mountains; S to N WA.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia