Gay Feather, Dense Blazing Star 'Kobold'

Liatris spicata

Family: Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Liatris (ly-AT-riss) (Info)
Species: spicata (spi-KAH-tuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Kobold
Synonym:Liatris spicata var. spicata
Synonym:Lacinaria spicata



Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

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)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade



Bloom Color:


Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall

Mid Fall



Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing rhizomes, tubers, corms or bulbs (including offsets)

Seed Collecting:

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed


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


Pelsor, Arkansas

Aptos, California

Pittsburg, California

Colorado Springs, Colorado

Denver, Colorado

Washington, District Of Columbia

Bokeelia, Florida

Panama City, Florida

Cordele, Georgia

Algonquin, Illinois

Chicago, Illinois

Godfrey, Illinois

Lake In The Hills, Illinois

Midlothian, Illinois

Plainfield, Illinois

Springfield, Illinois

Washington, Illinois

Waukegan, Illinois

Greenville, Indiana

Rossville, Indiana

Inwood, Iowa

Nichols, Iowa

Olathe, Kansas

Hanson, Kentucky

Hebron, Kentucky

Coushatta, Louisiana

New Iberia, Louisiana

Falmouth, Maine

Brookeville, Maryland

Ijamsville, Maryland

Blissfield, Michigan

Owosso, Michigan

Pinconning, Michigan

Royal Oak, Michigan

Albertville, Minnesota

Delano, Minnesota

Farmington, Minnesota

Florence, Mississippi

Ithaca, New York

Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Haviland, Ohio

Harrah, Oklahoma

Hugo, Oklahoma

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Butler, Pennsylvania

Downingtown, Pennsylvania

Johnsonburg, Pennsylvania

West Chester, Pennsylvania

Knoxville, Tennessee

Memphis, Tennessee

Arlington, Texas

College Station, Texas

Houston, Texas

Hurst, Texas

Santa Fe, Texas

Sugar Land, Texas

Salt Lake City, Utah (2 reports)

Leesburg, Virginia

Woodbridge, Virginia

Kalama, Washington

Seattle, Washington

Spokane, Washington

Delavan, Wisconsin

Madison, Wisconsin

Washburn, Wisconsin

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Feb 7, 2014, Rickwebb from Downingtown, PA wrote:

It is a beautiful erect clump of little grass-like leaves and great purple spikes where, unlike most flowers, the blooms open from top to bottom. It is very attractive to butterflies, hummingbirds, and other pollinators. Easy to grow, divide, and transplant. It does self sow some and it takes two years from seed germinating to bloom. Supposed to make a good cut flower and dried flower.This compact form usually does not fall over, but it can some when an older plant. The only trouble I have had is that it seems rabbits can eat it. This is the most common Gayfeather sold at most regular nurseries in the Midwest and East USA.


On Feb 28, 2012, Gabrielle from (Zone 5a) wrote:

My favorite Liatris. Very reliable and compact. Blooms in July in my garden.


On Jun 23, 2009, kbaumle from Northwest, OH (Zone 5b) wrote:

This year, after leaving the seed heads last fall for the birds, I had thousands of seedlings all over the garden. NEVER will I do that again! They're easy to pull out, but oh many and everywhere!


On Feb 6, 2007, Bellisgirl from Spokane, WA wrote:

Ive had mine for well over five years. It has now formed a nice mound that is 2-and a half feet tall and wide. The flowers are tall and spiky, and are beautiful neon purple color, and bloom from the bottom up. The flowers do not last very long, but are wonderful at attracting hummingbirds. Mine thrives in partial sun, with average moisure. The dark green, spiky foliage is also lovely.


On Jul 7, 2006, CaptMicha from Brookeville, MD (Zone 7a) wrote:

I really like this perennial but I'm not seeing much spreading or even any reseeding like I've hoped.

I have it in my butterfly garden, well drained soil in full sun.


On May 19, 2006, SisterClay from Hurst, TX (Zone 7b) wrote:

I really like this plant. It is planted in a very hot very dry location and does wonderfully.

It dies down in the winter and doesn't start to grow back until late spring. It was mid to late April before mine began to grow back--I almost thought it wasn't coming back. But as with most perennials, it is thicker and more beautiful than it was the first year.


On Nov 12, 2004, lmelling from Ithaca, NY (Zone 5b) wrote:

I've grown the 'Kobold' variety for many years. It appears very hardy and will grow happily as long as it has well drained soil and full sun. I transplanted several plants that were being overcome by a juniper on steroids, and they are now, again growing well in their new home.

Kobold makes nice dried flowers for arrangements. Cut when the flowers have opened about 3/4 of the way up to the top and air dry.


On Sep 21, 2004, RikerBear from Seattle, WA (Zone 8b) wrote:

Very easy plant to grow here in Seattle Washington. Average water needs.....seemed to thrive on neglect. Produces thousands of seeds.


On Aug 28, 2004, kooger from Oostburg, WI (Zone 5b) wrote:

Planted this last fall and it came up well and has four blooming spikes. Love it! (z4)


On May 14, 2004, tacm from Mansfield, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

I have grown this plant in the DFW area for 3 years. It is against the house and facing east, an area that tends to be hot and dry. It survived several days of snow and ice last year. After being completely overcome with a pyrethum mix to exterminate bees that had invaded the outside wall, it died to the ground and rose up this year bigger and better than ever. I love the contrast of the fine foliage with my Coneflowers and Spirea.