Easily grown in average, medium, well-drained soil in full sun to part shade. Prefers moist, loamy soils. Best fall foliage color usually occurs in full sun, but flowers generally last longer if given some afternoon shade in hot sun areas. This compact cultivar does not need to be cut back after flowering, and generally requires no staking or support when grown in full sun to part shade. Stems may open up and flop in too much shade, however.
Amsonia is a genus of about 20 species.
Genus name honors Dr. Charles Amson, 18th-century Virginian physician.
‘Blue Ice’ is a bluestar cultivar that is very similar in appearance to A. tabernaemontana, except it is much more compact and produces darker blue flowers. This is an erect, clump-forming plant that features terminal, pyramidal clusters of star-like, dark lavender-blue flowers (3/4” across) in late spring atop erect, leafy stems growing to only 15-18” tall. Narrow, willow-shaped, dark green foliage turns an attractive bright yellow in fall. Although ‘Blue Ice’ was reportedly discovered growing with A. tabernaemontana seedlings in a greenhouse at White Flower Farm, the parentage has apparently not yet been definitively determined.
No known serious insect or disease problems.
Borders, rock gardens, cottage gardens or open woodland areas. Best when massed. Compact size also enables use as an edging plant.