Gayfeather (Blazing Star)
Striking, bottlebrush spires of purple, star-shaped flowers give this plant its name. This perennial flower is native to meadows, prairies and grasslands of Eastern North America - growing to be 2-4 ft high and blooming from midsummer through early fall. Like its native habitats, this dazzling flower prefers full sun, well draining soil, and can happily withstand dry conditions. Blooms in second or third year, from seed. Once mature, can be propagated by corm offshoots.
Days to maturity: perennial - blooms in second or third year
Seeds per pack: 60
Germination rate: 53% on 04/07/2022
Planting / harvesting notes
Direct sow seeds in autumn, to overwinter. Otherwise, cold stratify for 8-10 weeks for spring planting. Sow indoors 6-8 weeks before last frost, just barely covering seeds with soil. Keep planting lightly moist, with ample light, until germination, usually 4-6 weeks to sprout.
Seed keeping notes
Photo credit: H. Zell, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons