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Liatris spicata

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© RHS 2002

Characteristics

Plant type

Herbaceous Perennial

Habit

Tufted

Resilience

Hardiness

old H4 (hardy)

Colour

Flower

Pink and Purple in Autumn and Summer

Foliage

Green in Autumn, Spring and Summer

Size

Ultimate height

0.5-1 metres

Ultimate spread

0.1-0.5 metres

Time to ultimate height

2-5 years


Preferred common name

button snakewort

Family

Asteraceae


Liatris are herbaceous perennials with narrow, grass-like foliage and erect, bottlebrush-like spikes of flowers which open from the top down

L. spicata is a perennial to 70cm in height, with narrow foliage and purplish-pink flower spikes in late summer and early autumn

Other common names

  • dense blazing star
  • Kansas gay feather

Synonym(s)

  • Liatris calilepis
  • Liatris callilipes
  • Liatris spicata callilepis

How to grow

Sunlight

  • Full sun

Aspect

  • South-facing
  • Exposed or Sheltered

Cultivation

Grow in light, moderately fertile soil that is reliably moist but not wet overwinter; full sun is essential

Soil

  • Moist but well-drained
  • Acid, Alkaline or Neutral
  • Clay, Loam, Chalk or Sand

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown in pots in a cold frame in autumn. Propagate by division in spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types

Prairie Planting, Flower borders and beds, Cut Flowers or Wildlife Gardens


How to care

Pruning

Deadhead regularly then cut stems down to the ground in winter

Pests

Generally pest free

Diseases

Generally disease free