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Liatris cylindracea

Ontario Blazing Star

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Liatris cylindracea (Ontario Blazing Star)

This blazing star is an upright, clump-forming perennial that grows to 2' tall. It typically occurs in rocky areas, glades and prairies. Fluffy, rose purple flower heads, each about 1 1/4 inch long, bloom in late summer. The blooms appear solitary or in a few clusters atop erect, leafy flower stalks. Sharp-pointed bracts form a tight elongated cylinder on each flowerhead, which gives the species one of its common name of Cylindrical Blazing Star. Narrow, linear, grass-like leaves to 10" long decrease in size toward the top of the plant.

Additional Information:
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.

18-24 Inches


6-12 Inches


Bloom/Seasonal Color
Red Violet

USDA Hardiness Zone 4-7

Home Owner Growing and Maintenance Tips:
Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soils in full sun. Prefers dry, sandy or rocky, alkaline soils. Somewhat tolerant of poor soils. Intolerant of wet soils in winter. Tolerant of summer heat and humidity. May be grown from seed, but is slow to establish.

Good Companions
Prairie Coneflower (Ratibida columnifera), Gray-head Coneflower (Ratibida pinnata), Blue Sage (Salvia azurea), Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium)

Characteristics & Attributes

Hydrologic Designation


Nature Attracting

Beneficial Insects



Season of Interest

Late (July-frost)

Soil Moisture


Special Uses

Fresh Cut Flower

Sun Exposure

Full Sun

USFS MO Ecological Map

Wildlife Benefit

Butterfly Nectar