Liatris or Gayfeather is a gorgeous perennial plant with tall, spikey plumes. The plant prefers full sun and easily grows in most types of soil, especially well drained soil. Liatris belongs to the aster family.
This plant attracts bees, butterflies and is deer resistant.
The above is a photo of a clear wing hummingbird moth. It isn’t one of my best photos but these little moths move so quickly it was a case of grab the camera and snap quickly. It was also taken a few years ago with one of the first digital cameras I had. The cameras and my photography skills have improved over the years.
Don’t get the caterpillar of the hummingbird moth confused with the tomato hornworm caterpillar. They are similar but there are subtle difference. Many people think the caterpillar seen on tomato plants is the hummingbird moth caterpillar but it isn’t. The tomato hornworm evolves into a five spotted moth.
The flower spikes, composed of many little blooms, opening from the top down. Usually plants with spikes open from bottom up. The large clump of liatris in my back garden and every year it gives many beautiful blooms.
Clumps may be divided every 3 or 4 years in the spring.
When blooming is finished, let the spike dry on the plant.
Seeds are in each little spot where the bloom was. You can snip off the spike and put it upside down in a paper bag, give it a shake every now and then and the seeds will come out. I usually open each little pod and release the seeds with my finger nail.
Seeds need a cool period before germination, which can take 20 to 45 days. Very often I sprinkle some of the seeds around the base of the main plant and let Mother Nature do the rest.
New plants grown from seed will not flower until the second year.