Prairie star is the second flower I notice in the spring (the first is always sagebrush buttercup). The earliest bloomers appear on well-drained south facing slopes, but this species (also known as woodland star) can tolerate a pretty wide variety of growing sites.

 

This species is ephemeral, meaning it goes completely dormant (and invisible) during the summer. They aren't dead, however, and will return with force the following spring. I suggest marking where you plant them so you don't accidentally disturb their sleep. 

 

Although small, prairie stars reseed readily and create a little colony if conditions allow. Plant with other ephemerals for a stunning spring display (larkspur and shooting star are nice), and add summer flowering species to keep the colors going. 

prairie star

  • Lithophragma parviflorum

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