Where Commonly Found: Prairie and dry savannas, NY.
How to Identify:
(For unfamiliar words: Wikipedia Glossary of Botanical Terms).
Minnesota Wildflower site for Liatris apsera .
ID Photo: from Missouri Botanical Garden website.
Flower Type: Spike-like clusters of 6″ – 18″ longs purple/pink flower heads, each about 1″ across, consisting of 25-40 star-shaped disk flowers. The style in the center of each flower a long divided string. Flower time is early August to late September.
Leaf Arrangement: Alternate leaves, but can be bunched to appear whorled.
Leaf Type: The basal leaves are often 12″ long and wither away by time of flowering, while stem leaves are pointed and blade-like, about 3″ long with a prominent central vein and pointed tip. Short still hairs give a rough leaf surface.
Height: 3′ – 5′
Seed Collection: The seeds, achemes, are about 1/8″ long or less with tuft of light brown hair that aid in wind dispersement. Cut horizontally through the flower stem spike 1/4″ above the first or second set of leaves. Allow flower stems to dry, spread out, at room temperature for 1 – 2 weeks. Rub on 1/4″ wire mesh to allow chaff and seeds to fall through. Store cool, dry.
Attracts: Bees, Butterflies, Hummingbirds
Use: Garden, Monarch Garden
Light: Full Sun to Part Sun
Hardiness Zone: 3 to 9 USDA Zone Map
Soils: Dry to Moist
Flower Color: Deep Lavender
Notes: Rough Blazing Star provides long spikes of lavender powder puffs covered with butterflies, birds and bees for the late season.
Native to the NY, Mid-Atlantic (except PA, NJ, WV) South-East, South and Mid-West US: Biota of North America Program (BONAP) – North American Plant Atlas (NAPA).