In accordance with Western Carolina University’s policies in response to Covid-19, Highlands Biological Station is currently closed to the public with the exception of the Botanical Garden trails, but does remain open to researchers and faculty on a limited basis; please contact the HBS office (828-526-2602) for information on reservations, rates, and Covid-19 policies.  We currently plan to offer our field courses, workshops, Grant-in-Aid program, and HBS Nature Center programs in summer 2021, with Covid-19 safety protocols in place (TBA).​ Please bear in mind, however, that University policy and HBS program plans are subject to change in light of developments with the pandemic this winter and spring, and those interested in attending HBS courses or programs or utilizing HBS facilities in spring or summer 2021 should check the HBS website regularly for updates.

Liatris spicata

Liatris spicata

Gayfeather

Asteraceae

Liatris spicata is a tall growing (3-5’), striking native perennial. Commonly called “dense blazing star” or “marsh blazing star”, it is a terrific addition to any home landscape. The range of L. spicata is vast, encompassing the Eastern US and into Arkansas and Missouri. The flowers attract a significant variety of butterflies including: Monarchs, tiger swallowtail, spicebush swallowtail, and grey hairstreak.