Liatris spicata (L.) Willd.
Family - Asteraceae
Stems - To +80cm tall, herbaceous, glabrous(or very sparsely pubescent), simple, single or multiple from the base.
Leaves - Alternate, grass-like, to 2cm broad, 30cm long, reduced upward, glabrous or very sparsely pubescent, sessile.
Inflorescence - A terminal spike to 30cm tall (long). At least lowest flower heads subtended by a small foliaceous bract. Heads fairly dense.
Involucre - To 1cm broad, +1cm tall. Phyllaries appressed, with scarious margins, tips rounded.
Ray flowers - Absent.
Disk flowers - Typically 3-18 flowers per head. Corolla tubular, rose to purple, glabrous internally. Pappus of capillary bristles.
Flowering - June - September.
Habitat - Meadows, slopes. Also cultivated.
Origin - Native to Eastern U.S.
Other info. - This
species is not native to Missouri but is often cultivated here and escaped.
Photograph taken at the Kansas City Zoo, 6-28-99, and in Marquette, MI., 9-5-2003.