Penstemon ‘Sour Grapes’


Penstemon ‘Sour Grapes’ is a captivating perennial cultivar cherished for its unique and enchanting characteristics. Standing around 1 metre tall, this hybrid showcases dense spikes of tubular flowers in a stunning shade of violet-blue with subtle lavender undertones. The blossoms, resembling clusters of delicate grapes, grace the plant from late spring through early summer, attracting pollinators and adding a delightful splash of colour to gardens and landscapes.

‘Sour Grapes’ boasts narrow, lance-shaped leaves that provide an appealing backdrop to the vibrant blooms. Its compact growth habit and drought tolerance make it an excellent choice for garden beds, borders, or containers. A testament to horticultural innovation, ‘Sour Grapes’ exemplifies the beauty and diversity that hybridisation brings to the world of plants. Explore its charm and discover a captivating addition to your garden.


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Origin: North America
Genus: Penstemon
Species / Cultivar: 'Sour Grapes'

Plant Biography

Penstemon ‘Sour Grapes’ is a cultivar of the Penstemon genus, known for its eye-catching flowers and distinctive coloration. While specific historical information about ‘Sour Grapes’ may be limited, it belongs to the broader history of Penstemon hybridisation and cultivation.

The Penstemon genus has its origins in North America, with various species naturally occurring across the continent. As interest in native plants grew, breeders began to experiment with crossbreeding different Penstemon species to create new and exciting cultivars with unique characteristics, such as flower colour, size, and growth habit.

‘Sour Grapes’ likely emerged from these hybridisation efforts, showcasing its striking violet-blue flowers and a hint of lavender that resembles its namesake. It’s important to note that detailed historical records on individual cultivars like ‘Sour Grapes’ might not be widely documented, but its existence is a testament to the ongoing innovation in horticulture and the desire to bring captivating and distinctive plants to gardeners and landscapes.

Penstemon 'Sour Grapes'
Soil: Well drained
Soil that does not show much signs of moisture, either visibly or when handled.
Situation: Full Sun to Part Shade
Enjoys direct sun most of the day, but tolerant of fewer sunlit hours or light dappling.
Eventual Height: 0.5-1m
The plant's ultimate height in typical growing conditions.
Eventual Spread: 0.1-0.5m
The plant's ultimate spread in typical growing conditions.
Hardiness: Hardy
Survives unprotected in an average winter. May need protection in extreme long frosts.
Habit: Deciduous
Sheds all its foliage annually, so for a period of the year it will be without foliage.
Lifecycle: Perennial
This plant is persistant and does not die off after flowering. It will return each season indefinitely, if provided with suitable growing conditions.
Care & Size Guidance

Care & Size Guidance

Caring for Penstemon ‘Sour Grapes’ involves providing well-drained soil and ample sunlight for optimal growth. Plant in a location that receives at least six hours of sunlight per day. Water regularly during the growing season, ensuring the soil remains slightly moist but not waterlogged. Deadhead spent flowers to encourage prolonged blooming and trim back after the flowering period to promote fresh growth. Mulching around the base helps retain moisture and control weeds.

This hybrid is generally low-maintenance and relatively drought-tolerant once established. Prune it back in late fall or early spring to maintain its shape and vigour. With these care steps, you can enjoy the striking beauty of ‘Sour Grapes’ in your garden.

After several years, the clumps can become quite congested and should be divided in the spring.


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