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Amsonia tabernaemontana

eastern bluestar add to wishlist

Plant types and subtypes: Perennials

Light Requirements: sun, part-sun, part-shade

Water Use: medium

Soil Moisture: moist

Soil Description: acid, neutral, average, loam, sand

Height: 2'-4'

Bloom Time: March, April, May

Bloom Color: lavender, blue

Leaf Color: green

Hardiness Zone: 5, 6, 7, 8

Additional Tags: clumping, cottage garden plant, cut flowers, fall interest, mounding, naturalizing, shade garden plant

Flowers of Amsonia tabernaemontana (eastern bluestar)
  • Flowers of Amsonia tabernaemontana (eastern bluestar)
  • Flowers of Amsonia tabernaemontana (eastern bluestar)
  • Flowers of Amsonia tabernaemontana (eastern bluestar)
  • Flowers of Amsonia tabernaemontana (eastern bluestar)

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Description

Amsonia tabernaemontana

Also known as:

eastern bluestar

,

bluestar

,

blue dogbane

,

willow amsonia

,

woodland bluestar

Scientific Synonyms:

Description

The eastern bluestar is a neat, clumping perennial that can form a mound 4' tall and 4' in diameter. The elongated leaves are lance-shaped and light-green growing on smooth, erect stems. In spring, the plants display a profusion of delicate, pale blue to lavender star-shaped flowers on terminal clusters. The foliage provides good visual interest in fall when it will turn an attractive yellow.

Cultivation

Easy to grow in average soil and light conditions. Amsonia tabernaemontana prefers moist, well-drained soil but is moderately drought tolerant. Its form is tall and compact if planted in a sunny location. If located in a shadier spot, pruning it back by 1/3 is recommended to encourage a fuller appearance. This bluestar can be used as a spectacular specimen in an informal cottage garden, as a transitional mass planting at the edge of woodlands, or in an open-shade garden. It blooms as early as March in the warmer limits of its extensive natural range, and as late as May in colder areas. Zones 5-8

Propagation

May be propagated by division of mature clumps in early spring. Fresh seeds will germinate immediately after sowing. Stored seeds will remain viable for several years but will require soaking and nicking to improve germination. Plants propagated from seeds will flower the second year after germination.

Additional Notes

The botanical family name Apocynaceae, is derived from the Greek apocynum, meaning noxious or distasteful to dogs; hence the common family name Dogbane.

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, AR, DE, FL, GA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, MO, MS, NC, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, SC, TN, TX, VA

USDA Endangered Status:

  • Special Concern: TN
  • Threatened: KY

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Asteridae
Order Gentianales
Family Apocynaceae Dogbane family
Genus Amsonia bluestar
Species Amsonia tabernaemontana eastern bluestar