Amsonia Species, Eastern Bluestar, Willow Amsonia, Woodland Blue Star

Amsonia tabernaemontana

Family: Apocynaceae (a-pos-ih-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Amsonia (am-SO-nee-uh) (Info)
Species: tabernaemontana (tab-er-nay-MON-tah-nuh) (Info)
Synonym:Amsonia amsonia
Synonym:Amsonia glaberrima
Synonym:Amsonia latifolia
Synonym:Ansonia latifolia
Synonym:Tabernaemontana amsonia
View this plant in a garden



Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Sun to Partial Shade



Foliage Color:

Medium Green


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


24-36 in. (60-90 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)

Where to Grow:

Grow outdoors year-round in hardiness zone


Handling plant may cause skin irritation or allergic reaction

Bloom Color:

Light Blue

Bloom Characteristics:

Flowers are showy

Bloom Size:

Under 1"


Bloom Time:

Late Spring/Early Summer

Other details:

This Plant is Least Concern (LC)

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 the rootball

Seed Collecting:

Collect seedhead/pod when flowers fade; allow to dry

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds


This plant is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Auburn, Alabama

Gadsden, Alabama

Morrilton, Arkansas

Aurora, Colorado

Sherman, Connecticut

Lewes, Delaware

Lutz, Florida

Pensacola, Florida

Dahlonega, Georgia

Douglas, Georgia

Marietta, Georgia

Champaign, Illinois

Evanston, Illinois

Washington, Illinois

Coushatta, Louisiana

Sulphur, Louisiana

Oxford, Maryland

Bridgewater, Massachusetts

Pepperell, Massachusetts

Somerville, Massachusetts

Bellaire, Michigan

Marquette, Michigan

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Maben, Mississippi

Bridgeton, Missouri

Brookline, New Hampshire

Munsonville, New Hampshire

Portsmouth, New Hampshire

Collingswood, New Jersey

Frenchtown, New Jersey

Neptune, New Jersey

Whitehouse Station, New Jersey

Brooklyn, New York

Cicero, New York

Jefferson, New York

Burlington, North Carolina

Concord, North Carolina

Columbia Station, Ohio

Glouster, Ohio

Enid, Oklahoma

Portland, Oregon

Salem, Oregon

Smyrna, Tennessee

Arlington, Texas

Austin, Texas

Houston, Texas

Morgantown, West Virginia

Parkersburg, West Virginia

Madison, Wisconsin(2 reports)

Porterfield, Wisconsin

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Jul 3, 2011, Gabrielle from (Zone 5a) wrote:

While I prefer A. hubrichtii, this is still a very attractive plant and adapts well. Blooms in May in my garden.


On May 26, 2009, flora_p from Champaign, IL (Zone 5b) wrote:

I find this plant useful in a fair bit of shade as well as in sun (I do trim it back a bit mid-summer if it looks floppy), and it hasn't been all that fussy about soil moisture--in short, it's adaptable and reliable. The blooms are pretty, and they last very well as cut flowers; the foliage is also attractive after the blooming stops. I'm putting it in more places in my garden, and it helpfully reseeds at a very polite speed, providing me with expansion plants without taking over.


On May 24, 2009, saya from Heerlen,
Netherlands (Zone 8b) wrote:

I've received seeds of it a few years ago.. I'm sorry I don't know which DG member has sent me seeds of these..I want to thank her or him for this pretty plant. It took about three years to flower from seed. Now it is flowering for its third season and even more abundant than last year. It has a very neat round habit and its scented flowers are so delicate pale blue..very pretty. It dies back in wintertime and emerges in spring with fresh vivid green foliage..soon it shows its (by that time) dark blue flower buds. Last winter we had temps that dropped to -20C for weeks that did not harm it at all.
Remove seedpods if you don't want any unvoluntary seedlings. When still small seedlings are easy to pull up. They root relatively deep.
Take care when handling plants. The milky w... read more


On May 31, 2008, straea from Somerville, MA (Zone 6b) wrote:

I'm always looking for more fairly tall native plants to add to the back of my dry, windy, sunny border. Last year the local nursery's manager said that she thought it would adapt to this site despite the common recommendation being that this plant grows best in humusy, moist soil. When I planted it, it nearly immediately lost all its leaves and appeared thereafter to have died, so I didn't see any point in moving it to a new location to see if it could recover. This spring I was shocked to see it sprout. It started out slowly but then rapidly caught up to the size of other area amsonias. It's now blooming its gorgeous flowers. It's adapted perfectly to the site and this year it is robust and healthy. I can hardly think of a more resilient plant for the garden.


On May 29, 2008, francesseth from Evanston, IL (Zone 5a) wrote:

This is one of my favorite plants. I have it in a part-sun situation next to the garage. It has a graceful habit and long-lasting flowers. I've had it about three years. Even after blooming, the leaves are attractive and make a good background for early summer plants.


On Nov 22, 2006, frostweed from Josephine, Arlington, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Eastern Bluestar, Woodland Blue Star, Willow Amsonia, Blue Dogbane Amsonia tabernaemontana is native to Texas and other States.


On Aug 21, 2004, pokerboy from Canberra,
Australia (Zone 8b) wrote:

A shrubby perennial plant that flowers mainly in spring. Likes full sun. Needs a moist, well-drained soil. Frost tolerant. pokerboy.


On Aug 31, 2001, Sis wrote:

Pest and Disease Prevention: No serious
pests or diseases. Mulch with organic matter
to keep the soil evenly moist.