Amsonia hubrichtii - PPA 2011 Plant of the Year
Each year members of the Perennial Plant Association choose an outstanding perennial to be their Perennial Plant of the Year. In 2011, they chose Amsonia hubrichtii (Arkansas Blue Star), a beautiful Amsonia with narrow feathery foliage that is native to Arkansas and Oklahoma.
Amsonia hubrichtii has fine textured, needle-like green foliage that adds a unique look to the garden. The feathery foliage creates a wonderful contrast with the bold textured leaves of purple coneflowers (Echinacea), Brown-eyed Susans (Rudbeckia), and Bee-balm (Monarda). In the fall, the beautiful foliage turns a stunning golden yellow which, when planted "en masse", makes an amazing show of color!
Amsonia hubrichtii grows to 36" tall and spreads to about 36" wide making a dense rounded clump. Once established in the garden, it is drought tolerant and relatively free of pests and disease. It's even deer resistant.
Beautiful clusters of light blue star-shaped flowers appear in the spring and make fine cut flowers for fresh arranging.
A Good Companion
The tall, billowy, cloud-like effect of these interesting perennials makes them a great addition to the sunny border garden or as a focal point in an island bed. Amsonia hubrichtii also creates a dramatic effect (especially in the fall) when planted in small groups and they are wonderful for native gardens or meadow plantings. They have great full season interest from the dainty spring flowers to the lovely feathery green summer foliage to the stunning show of brilliant autumn color. The spring flowers will even attract a wide range of early season butterflies to your garden.
Amsonia hubrichtii grows best in full sun but can tolerate bright shade, although if grown in too much shade, it tends to become leggy and the clump can flop open. Plant in average, well-drained soil for best performance. Zones 4-9.