Dodecatheon meadia, known as Shooting Star, is a perennial wildflower native to the woodlands and open clearings in North America. It is found in the American South, as well as the Upper Midwest, Kansas, New York, Pennsylvania and Maryland.
The species is best grown in evenly moist, humusy, well-drained soil in part shade. It will tolerate a range of sun conditions including full shade and full sun as long as evenly moist, well-draining soils are provided. Avoid poorly-drained, wet soils, particularly in winter. Slow and difficult to grow from seed.
Shooting star, is a much beloved, native wildflower that is indigenous to much of the eastern United States and typically occurs in open woods and glades, rocky wooded slopes, bluff ledges, meadows and prairies. From each basal rosette of lance-shaped leaves come 1-4 sturdy, leafless, center flower scapes rising to 20" tall. Atop each flower scape is an umbel containing 8-20, nodding, 1" long flowers. Each flower has five swept-back (reflexed) petals and a cluster of yellow stamens converging to a point, thus giving the flower the appearance of a shooting star plummeting to earth. Flower colors are quite variable, ranging from white to pink to light purple. It normally looms in late spring.
The genus name comes from the Greek words dodeka meaning twelve and theos meaning god.
There are no serious insect or disease problems. The foliage disappears and plant goes dormant in summer.
This species is beautiful when massed, especially with dwarf larkspur, partridgeberry and/or Dutchman's breeches.
We have a small number of Dodecatheon amethystinum.