When observed closely, the tubular flowers of Beardlip Penstemon (Penstemon barbatus) look strangely like gaping mouths due to their backward bent lower lobes.
These lovely, scarlet-flowered, native plants bloom from early summer to early fall in the Tucson, Arizona foothills and mountains at elevations above 4000 feet (1218 m).
Beardlip Penstemons and the many other red-flowered plants that bloom here attract hummingbirds, their main pollinators. Hummingbirds love the color red and will investigate any small, red-colored object, which is why hummingbird feeders are usually red. I've had hummingbirds come right up to me to investigate the red flowers printed on my shirt. Once, a hummingbird hovered close to my face, apparently fascinated by the bright lipstick I was wearing. Hummingbirds also really like pink or orange and will visit flowers of other colors, but red is definitely their favorite color.