Family: Asteraceae (Sunflower family)
Height: 30-140 cm (1-4.5 ft)
Liatris scariosa var. nieuwlandii (Lunell) E.G. Voss
Stem: often hairy to densely pubescent. Upper stem is often a dark maroon.
Flowers: it often has between 9 to 20 flower heads with 30 to 80 flowers in each head. The flowers are on stalks or peduncles 7-50 mm. (.25-2 in.) long. The florets are a gorgeous pink-purplish coloer.
Leaves: unlike the other varieties, the leaves are more-or-less even-sized and densely arranged. The upper, cauline leaves are lanceolate shaped. The lower leaf blades are up to 5 cm. (2 in.) wide. The lower leaves most of the time are petiolate while upper leaves are sessile (attached directly to the stem).
Sun: Full to part sun
Ideal conditions: Dry open to partially-shaded conditions.
SOURCES & FURTHER RESOURCES:
Shinners, L.H., 1943. A revision of the Liatris scariosa complex. The American Midland Naturalist, 29(1), pp.27-41.
all photos by Nathanael Pilla
Comments: Also called, savanna blazingstar. It looks close to its cousin, rough blazingstar, but notice that Nieuwland's has long stalks (pedicels) that are attached from the stem to the flower whereas rough blazing star either has short stalks or non at all. They often grow in the same habitat within tallgrass savannas.
It is rare, but keep your eye out for a white flowered form.
The variety that grows in Northwest Indiana is all var. nieuwlandii which grows taller than the other two varieties among other traits.
Etymology: It is unknown where its genus name, Liatris, derived from. Scariosa means "shrivelled, dried, thin".