Wednesday, August 03, 2011


Liatris spicata 'Purple Spikes’

(Gayfeather, Blazing Star)

I’ve written about Liatris before but this is another plant I’m adding to my easy perennial list. They are also deer resistant as opposed to, say, tasty beans.
We returned home to find the pole beans chewed off at the bottom. The vines shriveled and died and made their contribution to the compost heap.
Anyway, the erect Liatris, at about 3 feet tall, looks good as a stand-alone display or as a backbone among other annuals and perennials.

Liatris is slow spreading and comes in several shades including white. It is easy to divide in spring and makes a nice cut flower.
Liatris spicata ‘Floristan White’ (with Casablanca lilies)

The plants are drought tolerant after established – a good thing for this hot dry summer - and bloom from July into August. They will need to be dead-headed at the end of their bloom.
But, even if Liatris is deer resistant, it won’t prevent an animal from sitting on it.

(Doug Green has expert advice on how to grow Liatris here.)

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