Arkansas blue star is an unusual, upright, narrow perennial. It is grown for its fern-like feathery foliage, small light blue star-shaped flowers, and beautiful golden yellow fall color. It is native to the central Midwest.
The upright, billowy mounds of thread-like leaves reach 3 feet high and wide.
Native geographic location and habitat:
Arkansas blue star is found in open fields and dry rocky outcrops in Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Missouri.
Attracts birds or pollinators:
This perennial attracts butterflies and birds.
The light green leaves are alternate, 1/16 wide and 3 inches long. It has asparagus fern-like foliage. It turns a bright yellow-gold in the fall.
The star-shaped terminal flowers are light blue to almost white.
The narrow seed pods appear in pairs.
This plant grows in full sun to light shade, but does not tolerate heavy shade. It does best in a well drained soil, but is tolerant of dry conditions and temporary wet sites, once it is established. It prefers cool temperatures. In wet seasons, the plant may open up in the center and require staking. It can be cut back in the spring to promote denser growth. It should be cut back after flowering to remove the seed pods.
List of pests and diseases:
This plant has no serious pests or diseases. It is not favored by deer.
Butterscotch Arkansas blue star (Amsonia hubrichtii ‘Butterscotch’):
This cultivar is 3 to 4 feet high and 2 to 3 feet wide with butterscotch yellow fall color.
Lemon Drop Arkansas blue star (Amsonia hubrichtii ‘Lemon Drop’):
This plant is 3 to 4 feet high and 2 to 3 feet wide with lemony-yellow fall color.
Downy starflower amsonia (Amsonia ciliata):
This compact plant (1 to 3 feet high and 2 to 3 feet wide) has silky, dark green thin leaves and pale blue flowers.
Half Way To Arkansas blue star(Amsonia ciliata ‘Half Way to Arkansas’):
This plant is 2 to 3 feet high with pale blue flowers. Its leaves turn golden yellow with a purple-bronze tint.