Stokesia laevis ‘Blue Star’
BLUE STAR STOKE’S ASTER
Stokesia laevis ‘Blue Star’ produces startling blue flowers, from mid-spring on into summer and then repeats again in autumn.
Startling blue flowers
Fringed and shaggy petals of electric blue, burst out from purple-blue centres, with creamy eyes.
Flowers are large (can be up to 10cm. across) with multiple blooms borne on each strong stem.
Reliable, heavy bloomer
Stokesia laevis ‘Blue Star’ is a very generous bloomer indeed, and so continues giving from mid-spring on until the frosts start, and for even longer in sub-tropical climates without frost.
Excellent cut flowers for florists
Stokesia laevis plants provide long lasting and lovely cut flower for vases.
And are grown commercially for the floristry trade, in all their lovely colours and forms.
Surprisingly hardy in hot & dry
Stokesia laevis ‘Blue Star’ will bloom happily in Full Sun as well as Part Shade and Dappled Sun. And is surprisingly hot and dry hardy once the clumps are established.
It can also cope with frost down to -15C.
So ‘Blue Star’ is well rated as a water-wise and frost hardy plant.
Surprisingly also thrives in sub-tropical humidity
But also surprisingly, Stokesia ‘Blue Star’ thrives in humid and sub-tropical gardens, as well as in frosty cooler-climate gardens.
Surprising because you do not often get the hat trick all in one plant
And happily it is even longer blooming in sub-tropical conditions with summer humidity.
Boon to bees & pollinators
Stokesia laevis flowers are rich in nectar for bees and beneficial pollinating insects.
And with their exceptionally generous and repeat blooming, they are a real boon to our flying friends.
Stokesia laevis is a native of south-east U.S.A. where it grows in moist, acid soil, amongst the understory of coniferous forests.
So this explains it’s ability to cope with both frosts and summer humidity; and Sun or Part Shade.
(Scroll down to “Growing” section below for plant details, how / where to grow)
SEED SOWING ADVICE: QUICK & EASY
Seed for Stokesia laevis ‘Blue Star’ can be sown at any tine indoors
INDOORS: First scatter the seed on the surface of good quality potting mix.
Then pat the seeds gently to the surface of the mix to ensure good contact.
Now cover the seeds with 1cm of sieved mix.
Then thoroughly moisten the mix by standing the punnet in a shallow water bath.
And allow the moisture to percolate up to the surface of the mix from below.
Cover the punnet with a clear plastic lid to help maintain moisture.
Now place the covered punnet in a warm position (not in direct sunlight).
You can use a heat mat if you have one, and this maintains optimum temperatures.
Temperatures of 16-22°C are best for rapid and optimum germination.
And continue to keep moist by misting the surface from a spray water bottle.
Then seedlings emerge in approx. 21-30 days.
Remove the clear cover as soon as germination begins and grow the seedings on ready to plant in the garden.
SEED COUNT: 5 seeds per pack approx.
(We always aim to exceed the stated seed count and give a generous serve).
GROWING: Stokesia laevis ‘Blue Star’
– Height with flowers: 60cm approx.
– Width: 45cm approx.
– Position: Full Sun, though it can tolerate Partial Shade, particularly in hot areas.
– Soil: Well-drained soil is necessary for this plant. It is very adaptable to moist or dry conditions once established, but will not tolerate standing water.
– Frost: Hardy to approx -15C.
– Growth: Evergreen Perennial.
– Bees & birds: Beneficial pollinators like bees and butterflies absolutely adore the landing pad of Stokesias.
– Care: Keep new plants watered after planting. Minimal care is needed once established in the garden. Dead-head readily for repeat, fresh blooms.
– Deer & Rabbit resistant: Unpalatable and resistant to such animal pests.
– Origin: Native of the south-east of the U.S.A.
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