This yellow and blue combination is a striking duo in a sunny, well-drained border in early summer. The spiky form of the beard-tongue contrasts with the flat heads of the yarrow while the colors of the flowers complement each other. The fine texture of the yarrow heads are a pleasant contrast to the coarser texture of the snapdragon-like flowers of the beard-tongue. The gray-green foliage of the yarrow and the seed heads of the both plants will add interest well into the fall.
Rocky Mountain Beard-Tongue (Penstemon strictus)
A native from southern Wyoming to Arizona where it is often associated with conifers or sagebrush, Rocky Mountain beard-tongue is an evergreen perennial with rich blue to purple flowers on 1-3’ stems rising above a low mat of foliage. The leaves are glossy and range from narrow and grass-like to long and broad. Plants spread slowly but can form large clumps.
- Early summer
- 24-36” H x 6-12” W
- Zones 3-8
Yarrow (Achillea x) ‘Moonshine’
One of the best of the yarrows, ‘Moonshine’ is an upright, clump-forming perennial featuring flat-topped clusters of lemon-yellow flowers. The aromatic foliage is gray-green, deeply-dissected and attractive all season. Deadheading encourages more flowering and cutting the plant back may result in a fall rebloom.
- Early summer; throughout summer in some climates
- 1-2’ H x 1-2’ W
- Zones 3-8