Saturday, June 30, 2007

Penstemon digitalis 'Husker Red': flowers

Penstemon digitalis, known in English as smooth penstemon, foxglove penstemon, or foxglove beardtongue and in French as penstémon digitalis is a perennial native to eastern North America. Like foxglove, smooth penstemon bears tall spires of nodding flowers. This photo does not do justice to the striking cultivar Husker Red, which has dark red stems contrasting beautifully with the white blossoms. This gorgeous specimen was photographed at Toronto Botanical Garden.

Aquilegia canadensis: flowers and seed pods

Aquilegia canadensis (known in English as wild columbine, red columbine, or Canada columbine and in French as ancolie du Canada or gants de Notre-Dame is a short-lived herbaceous perennial native to southeastern Canada and northeastern United States. Like most columbines, its flowers have five long spurs. This is my favourite wildflower, in part because it is one of the few red flowers found in the Canadian wilderness.

I photographed this pretty clump of wild columbine at Toronto Botanical Garden in late June. Columbine blooms in the spring so I was pleasantly surprised to see there were still some blooms left, as well as the brown seedpods.

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