Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Willow Amsonia (Amsonia tabernaemontana)
- Family: Dogbane (Apocynaceae)
- Flowering: May-June.
- Field Marks: Members of the dogbane family usually
have milky sap and 5-parted flowers. Blue star differs from all
the others by having alternate, non-shiny leaves, erect fruits,
and pale blue star-shaped flowers.
- Habitat: Bottomland forests, mesic woods, damp
roadside ditches, river banks.
- Habit: Perennial herbs.
- Stems: Erect, usually several together, unbranched,
smooth or less commonly hairy, up to 3 feet tall.
- Leaves: Alternate, simple, lanceolate to ovate,
pointed at the tip, tapering or rounded at the base, smooth or
sometimes hairy, without teeth, not shiny, up to 5 inches long,
up to 2 1/2 inches wide.
- Flowers: Several in a terminal cyme, pale blue.
- Sepals: 5, united below, smooth.
- Petals: 5, united below into a slender, hairy tube
1/4-1/3 inch long, the lobes pointed, spreading, 1/4-1/3 inch
- Stamens: 5, attached to the tube of the petals.
- Pistils: Ovaries 2, superior.
- Fruits: Paired follicles, erect, cylindrical, smooth,
up to 4 1/2 inches long.
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