This genus has just one species, a perennial, hailing from the conifer woods of the southeastern United States. Stokesia laevis is an erect, evergreen (in warmer climates) plant with mid-green leaves that have obvious white ribs. For a long period beginning in midsummer, cornflower-like blue flower heads top upright stems. These plants have a fluffy appearance due to their fringed ray florets in shades of purplish blue, pink, or white. Grow in a warm location in a herbaceous border.
Noteworthy CharacteristicsFluffy, cornflower-like flowers over a long period. Native to the southeastern U.S.
CareStokesia needs light, fertile, moist but well-drained, acidic soil in full sun. Plants may rot in damp, heavy soils. Provide support using twigs and deadhead regularly.
PropagationSow seed in containers in a cold frame in autumn. Divide in spring. Take root cuttings in late winter or early spring.
ProblemsLeaf spot, caterpillars.