Highlands Biological Station buildings remain closed to visitors with the exception of limited visitor hours for the Nature Center.  HBS Botanical Garden trails remain open, and in accordance with University policy masks and physical distancing are required on the HBS campus.  Highlands Biological Station currently plans to offer academic and public programming in summer 2021, observing University mandated Covid-19 safety protocols.  For the safety of the HBS summer community, before being permitted to work or study at HBS prospective summer students, teaching faculty, and researchers must provide documentation of (1) having received a Covid-19 vaccine or (2) a negative Covid-19 test taken within 3 days of planned arrival.  Please see the HBS website for full summer 2021 Covid-19 safety policies and procedures, and bear in mind that University policy and HBS program plans are subject to change in light of developments with the pandemic this spring. 

Liatris spicata



Composite Family

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.


Weakley, A.S. 2020. Flora of the southeastern United States. University of North Carolina Herbarium, North Carolina Botanical Garden.