|Picture by H. Scaggins - from the Chanticleer Garden|
Amsonia is a North American native. The species was found in Arkansas in 1942 by Leslie Hubricht. The foliage is thin and strap—like, often reaching three inches in length. From late spring to early summer, two- to three-inch wide clusters of small, light blue, star shaped flowers appear above the ferny foliage. This amsonia forms a three-foot-by-three-foot mound.Holly Scaggins blogged about it recently at the Garden Professors, highlighting its fabulous fall foliage.
Exhibits the best boofy habit of all perennials (somewhat like "floofy", but rounder). Native to southern/central U.S. and totally drought tolerant. The pale blue star-shaped flowers in late Spring are fairly underwhelming, especially given all the other stuff going on at the time. The fine, needle-like foliage adds a wonderful soft texture throughout the summer. As the days shorten and the nights cool down, it begins to glow...first a soft gold, and then adds bronze and apricot to the mix - basically a color twin of Sporobolis heterolepis (Prairie Dropseed, previously described in a GP post).According to the flyer, it:
Prefers average, moist well-drained soil but tolerates less moisture. Once established, it can tolerate drier conditions. Light blue flowers in spring are followed by a marvelous display of foliage in summer. A golden-yellow fall color is second to none among herbaceous perennials. It is uniquely suited as a companion plant or as a feature. This perennial for the seasons is an asset in borders, native gardens, cottage gardens or open woodland areas. It is best when massed. Arkansas blue star is attractive when mixed with ornamental grasses and plants that have attractive seed heads.