Vascular Plants of North Carolina
Account for Dense Blazing-star - Liatris spicata var. resinosa   (Nuttall) Gaiser
Members of Asteraceae:
Members of Liatris with account distribution info or public map:
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Section 6 » Order Asterales » Family Asteraceae
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Author(Nuttall) Gaiser
DistributionCoastal Plain and Sandhills.

Coastal Plain, southern NJ to southern FL and LA.
AbundanceUncommon to common.
HabitatWet Longleaf Pine-Wiregrass savannas and flatwoods, ecotones of pocosins, blackwater streamheads and ecotones.
See also Habitat Account for Wet, Sandy, Fire-maintained Herblands
PhenologyFlowering and fruiting August-September into early October.
IdentificationBlazing-stars typically have single stems, many slender leaves, and a terminal spike-like inflorescencxe of disk florets only. They grow from very hard, roundish, underground corms. Dense Blazing-star grows 2-5 feet tall, 1 stem from a single corm, stems erect, lower leaves lance-shaped, mid and upper leaves abruptly narrower, shorter, and stalkless. Heads are numerous in a dense spike, have 5-8 red-purple florets, and occur all round the stem. Variety spicata differs in having leaves gradually smaller up the stem, usually longer involucral bracts, and usually more florets per head.
Taxonomic CommentsNote that the distributions of the two varieties of L. spicata do not overlap in NC. Weakley (2022) elevates each to full species status, saying of form spicata: "Blooming earlier than the coastal L. resinosa, even though occurring inland, more northerly, and at higher elevations". However, the website editors will await a published journal paper before making the move.

Other Common Name(s)
State Rank[S3S4]
Global RankG5T3T5
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US Status
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B.A. SorrieFort Bragg, streamhead seepage ecotone, Sept 2012. HarnettPhoto_natural

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