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Stiff Aster, Bristly Aster, Flaxleaf Whitetop Aster, Pine Starwort
Ionactis linariifolius

Family: Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Ionactis (eye-OHN-ak-tiss) (Info)
Species: linariifolius (lin-ar-ee-FOH-lee-us) (Info)
Synonym:Aster linariifolius
Synonym:Aster linariifolius var. victorinii

Category:

Perennials

Height:

12-18 in. (30-45 cm)

18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

Spacing:

12-15 in. (30-38 cm)

Hardiness:

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun

Danger:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Color:

Pink

Violet/Lavender

White/Near White

Bloom Time:

Late Summer/Early Fall

Mid Fall

Foliage:

Herbaceous

Other details:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Soil pH requirements:

5.1 to 5.5 (strongly acidic)

5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Patent Information:

Non-patented

Propagation Methods:

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Seed Collecting:

Unknown - Tell us

Regional

This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Sykesville, Maryland

San Antonio, Texas

Gardeners' Notes:

2
positives
0
neutrals
0
negatives
RatingContent
Positive

On Jul 23, 2005, htop from San Antonio, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

This aster inhabits dry clearings, sandy woods, rocky slopes, rocky stream beds and prairies. A durable plant, it prefers only full sun and it thrives in acidic, sandy soils. It withstands drought as well as seasonal flooding. It usually attains a height between 12 and 24 inches and a width of 6 to 12 inches. It forms stiff, rounded clumps. The dark, shiny leaves resemble small yew leaves or linaria leaves. This explains its species name "linariifolius" which means "leaves like Linaria". The leaves are in whorls that are at right angles to the stem. The pale blue-purple flowerheads are 3/4 to 1 inch across with a disk that starts out yellow and then turns red-orange as the bloom matures. They are produced at the ends of ascending stems and are great cut flowers. To encourage bushiness and ... read more

Positive

On Aug 30, 2004, bluespiral from (Zone 7a) wrote:

DH and I sighted this plant growing wild on a stony, dry bank above the railroad tracks today. Part of the sunny slope it grew on was a steep abandoned dirt road leading to the tracks, the rest was right over boulders.

Smartweed vine romped to the right and left and below, but not on top. It grew in colonies interspersed with sparse grasses, other smaller colonies of possibly Maryland golden aster (Chrysopsis mariana), New Jersey Tea (Ceanothus americanus) and a small, ground-hugging, fernleaf Senna (Cassia sp.) It was just beginning to bloom. This little patch emerged from a canopy of oak and hickory.

The intensity of its violet-blue color and its rosemary-like leaves were quite a surprise. We have never seen this plant before in our 30 years of hiking... read more