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Native Plant Database

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Liatris elegans (Blazing star)
Loughmiller, Campbell and Lynn

Liatris elegans

Liatris elegans (Walter) Michx.

Blazing star, Gay feather, Pink-scale gayfeather, Pinkscale blazing star

Asteraceae (Aster Family)

Synonym(s):

USDA Symbol: liel

USDA Native Status: L48 (N)

Gay feather is a slender, unbranched plant, 1-4 feet tall. Its narrow leaves, much like pine needles, are about 3 inches long, whorled around the stem. The flower spike is 6-20 inches long, blooming from the top downward. Flowers are purple to pale lavender-pink, about 1/2 inch long. There are no ray flowers, but long, petal-like bracts the same color as the disk flowers are often mistaken for them.

 

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Size Notes: 1-4
Fruit:
Size Class: 1-3 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Pink , Purple
Bloom Time: Aug , Sep , Oct

Distribution

USA: AL , AR , FL , GA , LA , MS , OK , SC , TX
Native Distribution: Coastal states SC to TX, inland to AR & OK
Native Habitat: Prairies; pinelands; well-drained, sandy sites

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Sun
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Dry, sandy or rocky soils.
Conditions Comments: Not Available

Benefit

Use Wildlife: Liatris spp. attract butterflies.
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Butterflies
Nectar Source: yes

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is either on display or available from the following:

Stengl Biological Research Station - Smithville, TX
NPSOT - Austin Chapter - Austin, TX

Wildflower Center Seed Bank

LBJWC-1151 Collected 2006-11-13 in Harrison County by Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

Bibliography

Bibref 765 - McMillen's Texas Gardening: Wildflowers (1998) Howard, D.
Bibref 248 - Texas Wildflowers: A Field Guide (1984) Loughmiller, C. & L. Loughmiller

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Additional resources

USDA: Find Liatris elegans in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Liatris elegans in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Liatris elegans

Metadata

Record Last Modified: 2007-06-30
Research By: TWC Staff

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