Alphabetical Plant Listing

Mentzelia laevicaulis (Giant Blazing Star)

Smoothstem Blazingstar, Giant Blazing Star, Evening Star, Stick Leaf, Northern Blazing Star


Noted for its exceptionally large flowers, Mentzelia laevicaulis (Giant Blazing Star) is a biennial or short-lived perennial boasting star-like, bright yellow flowers, 6 in. wide (15 cm), with 5 sharp-pointed petals and a prominent bouquet of very long stamens. Blooming in early summer to early fall, the blossoms are borne on a single, branched stem clad with silvery-green, lobed, wavy-margined, sticky leaves, 1-6 in. long (2-15 cm). The leaves have a barbed pubescence that causes the leaf to readily attach to any object touched. The flowers open at dusk and remain open overnight and into early morning before closing for the afternoon. They are a source of nectar and pollen for native bees, butterflies and moths. They give way to numerous, flat, wing-margined seeds within a woody capsule. Native Americans consumed these seeds for food. The roots were used to treat rheumatism, arthritis, earaches, fevers, mumps, measles and smallpox, as well as other diseases. Giant Blazing Star is a desirable garden subject for dry areas and is well-suited for a rock garden, steppe garden, or rocky slopes.

  • Grows up to 1-3 ft. tall (30-90 cm). Will self-seed in the landscape.
  • Performs best in full sun in sandy, gravelly, well-drained soils.
  • Perfect for rock gardens, steppe gardens, rocky slopes and water-wise gardens.
  • No serious pest or disease issues.
  • Propagate by seeds. Germination is improved if seeds are soaked prior to sowing. This plant is difficult to transplant due to its deep taproot and barbed leaves.
  • Native to western North America from southern Canada to California, Utah, and Colorado.

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Requirements

Hardiness 2 – 11
Plant Type Annuals, Perennials
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 1' – 3' (30cm – 90cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, California, Pacific Northwest, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Rocky Mountains, Colorado, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, Southwest, Nevada
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Uses Banks and Slopes
Garden Styles Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

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Gary Chang, Peter Stevens, Flickr

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 2 – 11
Plant Type Annuals, Perennials
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Height 1' – 3' (30cm – 90cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy
Native Plants United States, California, Pacific Northwest, Idaho, Oregon, Washington, Rocky Mountains, Colorado, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, Southwest, Nevada
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Uses Banks and Slopes
Garden Styles Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage, Prairie and Meadow

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