Antennaria plantaginifolia 'Pussytoes'
Zone: 3 to 8
Native Range: North America
Height: 0.5 to 1 feet
Spread: 0.75 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: April to June
Bloom Color: White
Bloom Description: White tinged with pink
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Flowers: Flowers not Showy
Wildlife: Attracts Butterflies
Tolerates: Dry Soil, Shallow, Rocky Soil, Drought
Uses: Dried Flower, Groundcover, Will Naturalize
Best grown in lean, gritty to rocky, dry to medium moisture, well-drained soils in full sun. Does not do well in fertile, humusy soils, particularly if drainage is poor. In optimum growing conditions, however, it can spread by stolons to form an attractive ground cover.
This species of pussytoes (sometime also called plantain-leaved pussytoes, plantain-leaved everlasting and ladies' tobacco) is a North American native perennial which typically grows in acid soils on dry or rocky slopes, prairies and glades. . It is a stoloniferous, mat-forming, woolly plant, with all of the leaves and flower stalks being woolly and grayish. Somewhat non-showy, fuzzy, whitish flower heads tinged with pink bloom in spring. Flowers are crowded into terminal clusters (corymbs) atop small-leaved flowering stems rising to 10" high from a basal rosette of paddle-shaped leaves (to 3" long). Plants are dioecious (male and female flowers on separate plants), with male flowers typically appearing on shorter flower stalks. Commonly called pussytoes because of the supposed resemblance of each tight flower cluster to the pads or toes of a cat's paw. Basal leaves resemble plantain, hence the species name.
No serious insect or disease problems. Difficult plant to grow unless lean, dry, well-drained soil conditions can be met.
Soft, gray foliage is arguably the best ornamental feature of this native perennial. Useful as a small area ground cover in rock gardens, rocky slopes, open woodland areas, prairie areas or other lean, rocky areas in the landscape.
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