Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red' Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red' Photo/Illustration: David Cavagnaro 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 (Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red') PEN-steh-mon dij-ih-TAL-iss Genus: Penstemon 'Husker Red' is one of the few penstemons that does well in wet winters and hot, humid summers. Ruby-toned leaves appear in spring, followed in late spring and early summer by 3-foot-high stems adorned by panicles of white blooms. The flowers attract bees, hummingbirds, and butterflies, but the plants are not magnets for deer or rabbits. In autumn and winter, songbirds feast on the seed. For a stunning display, plant 'Husker Red' in groups. -Chris Kelley, Regional Picks: Midwest, Fine Gardening issue #120 Noteworthy Characteristics: 'Husker Red' was the Perennial Plant Association Plant of the Year in 1996. Care: Provide full sun to light shade and average, well-drained soil. Stake plants if necessary. Propagation: Divide plants in spring; take cuttings in summer; start seed indoors at 55-64°F. Problems: Nothing serious, but root rot can occur in wet soil. Leaf spots occur occasionally. Overview Height 1 ft. to 3 ft. Spread 1 ft. to 3 ft. Growth Habit Clumps Growth Pace Moderate Grower Light Full Sun to Part Shade Moisture Dry to Medium Maintenance Low Characteristics Attracts Birds, Attracts Butterflies, Attracts Hummingbirds, Native, Showy Flowers, Showy Foliage Bloom Time Early Summer, Late Spring, Spring, Summer Flower Color White Flower Foliage Color Colorful/Burgundy Foliage Uses Beds and Borders Style Cottage Garden Seasonal Interest Spring Interest Tolerance Deer Tolerant, Drought Tolerant Type Perennials Related Plants to Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red' 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Purple coneflower Echinacea purpurea ‘Bright Star’ 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Meadow clary Salvia pratensis 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 White coneflower Echinacea purpurea ‘White Swan' 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 'Crimson Curls' coral bells Heuchera 'Crimson Curls' View the discussion thread.