Western Mountains and High Plains
Favorite or New Plant
Also known as blazing star, Liatris spicata is truly spectacular, with long, plump spikes of rosy-purple flowers above handsome narrow foliage. You may often see it used in florist's arrangements, but it is more at home on the prairie. The flowers open from top to bottom and will attract butterflies to your garden. Blazing star is at its best in prairie and meadow plantings where the tall stems (up to 3 ft.) are supported by the grasses and other meadow flowers. The cultivar 'Kobold' (15 to 18 in.), also called 'Gnome,' has a compact growth habit that eliminates the need for staking. Bright red-violet flower spikes stand out in the garden. They are good cut flowers with strong stems and spikes that continue to open from the top down, making a long-lasting display.
Clever Gardening Technique
Invest in Good Pruning Tools
When buying pruners, look for models that can be easily disassembled when they need adjusting and cleaning, and for which replacement blades can be purchased for future use. Cleaning parts is easy and will prolong the life of the pruners.