Always a day late and a dollar short, my Wildflower Wednesday post is on Thursday.
While Gail, Carrie and I took photos of the roadside prairie meadows near RDR, we noticed a small pink flower in abundance. Neither one of us had ever seen this tiny and intense flower before so we literally ran back to the house to look it up. As always the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center came to our rescue. If you are ever in Austin, make a date with the Wildflower Center. I did, and it remains one of my favorite garden destinations.
This little beauty is Sabatia campestris, or as it goes by its common names, Texas star, Rose gentian, Meadow pink, Prairie rose-gentian, or Prairie sabatia. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a prettier wildflower, and there are many blooming this time of year around these parts.
Sabatia campestris is a two inch bloom on slender 20 inch stems. It is perennial and will form colonies spreading via seeds. It is native to the south central United States and has been naturalized in parts of New England. In Illinois, it is on the endangered list. It can be established in lawns, and due to its short stature, it can be mowed.
If you see this wildflower blooming from April through June in Oklahoma, you can mark it and later collect seeds as soon as they ripen in late summer. They like sandy loam and good drainage, so if you have clay, you need to sow them in a raised bed of low soil fertility. One of the reasons we saw so much of it this summer was due to the recent, heavy rainfall. It loves water when blooming. Once started, it will self sow and develop into larger colonies of pink stars according to the Wildflower Center.
It is a pretty thing mixed amongst its yellow-flowering compatriots this time of year. Thanks to Gail and Clay and Limestone for hosting Wildflower Wednesday. For other profiled plants, head over to her blog and click on Mr. Linky.