Meadow Blazing Star, Liatris ligulistylis

Meadow Blazing Star

Liatris ligulistylis

Benefits: Pollinator Benefit Graphic
Sun Shade: Plant Light Requirements Graphic
Bloom Time: Late Summer/Early Fall
Hardiness Zones: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8
Soil Conditions: Loam
Soil Moisture: Dry, Medium, Moist
Color: Pink, Purple
Fragrance: No
Height: 3 - 5 feet
Spacing: 1 foot

Meadow Blazing Star (Liatris ligulistylis) is an upright, clump-forming perennial that typically grows to 2 feet tall in the wild. It may grow taller in cultivation, particularly if planted in rich, fertile garden soils. It typically occurs in rocky woods, rocky slopes, prairies, and gravel areas along streams. Fluffy, thistle-like, deep rose-purple flower heads (each to 1.25 inches) appear on terminal columnar inflorescences atop erect, leafy flower stems. Stems rise up from basal tufts of narrow, lanceolate-oblong to oblanceolate, green leaves (to 6 inches long). Blooms in late summer to early fall. Liatris belongs to the aster family, with each flower head having only fluffy disk flowers (resembling “blazing stars”) and no ray flowers. The feathery flower heads of liatris give rise to another common name of Gayfeather. Within an inflorescence, flower heads bloom somewhat at the same time, which makes this species a good fresh cut flower for floral arrangements.

Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soils in full sun. Somewhat tolerant of poor soils. Prefers dry, sandy or rocky, alkaline soils. Will grow taller in fertile loams, but may need staking. Intolerant of wet soils in winter. Tolerant of summer heat and humidity. May be grown from seed, but is slow to establish.
Plant Notes and Herbal Uses
  The ultimate Monarch Butterfly magnet.
  The seeds are popular with Goldfinches.
  Divide large clumps in spring with a sharp knife or shovel.
Further Information

 Wisconsin Fruit Trees
 Wisconsin Edible Berry Shrubs
 Widsconsin Edible Plants-Eat On The Wild Side
 8 Dandelion Recipes
 Wisconsin Native Plant Nurseries

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