is a group of over 250 species of
herbaceous perennials and shrubs that are
native to the Midwest and Rocky Mountain area of
the United States. They have opposite or whorled
leaves and brightly colored tubular flowers in
terminal racemes during the summer.
grow from low clumps of dark green or maroon
foliage from which the flower stalks emerge.
The name is
penta (5) and stemon (stamens) because the flowers have 5
stamens with 4 being fertile and 1 being
sterile. The common name comes from the throat
of the flowers which are hairy.