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     •  California Native Plant Society

     •  Cal-IPC

     •  Santa Barbara Botanic Garden

     •  Theodore Payne Foundation

  Local Favorites

Penstemon heterophyllus
'Margarita BOP'
Blue Bedder Penstemon

Margarita BOP

When people ask us for us for drought-tolerant plants that have lots of flowers and look good year-round, we tell them such plants aren't native to California, just go to Home Depot and buy some Marigolds. And as they walk away sad and insulted, we tell them “just kidding!” and lead them right to this plant, easily our best-selling perennial.

'Margarita BOP' (introduced by Las Pilitas Nursery) is a total garden gem, forming a tidy clump 18 inches high and 2 feet wide. Beginning in spring, masses of pinkish-purple-bluish-violet flowers begin shooting up from the plant, the flowers seemingly changing color depending on their age and the light in which they are viewed. A single specimen of this plant is beautiful, but if your Dad gives you enough money, buy a few and place them 'en masse' and get ready for a little piece of Heaven in your garden!

A very 'easy-to-grow' low maintenance plant, just find an open, sunny site with decently-drained soil and off you go. Depending on where you live, you may want to deeply water this plant once or twice a month to keep it looking fresh, and removing the dry flower stalks has been known to encourage blooming throughout the Summer, sometimes into Fall. Oh yeah, this plant looks pretty good in a container, too.

So lets review, small, tidy evergreen plant, lots of eye-catching neon purple flowers for months on end, minimal maintenance AND drought-tolerant?? Yeah, you're right, we should probably charge more for this plant.