Liatris punctata Hook.

Prairie Snakeroot

Liatris punctata plant

Family - Asteraceae

Stems - No info yet.

Liatris punctata rootRoot.

Leaves - No info yet.

Liatris punctata leavesLeaves and stem.

Inflorescence - No info yet.

Liatris punctata inflorescence

Involucre - No info yet.

Liatris punctata involucre

Ray flowers - Absent.

Disk flowers - No info yet.

Liatris punctata flowers

Flowering - August - November.

Habitat - Loess hill prairies, upland prairies.

Origin - Native to U.S.

Other info. - This attractive species can be found in just a handful of western Missouri counties. The plant can be identified by its long, carrot-like, vertical root, typically multiple stems, and many flower heads. The flower heads are sessile and contain 3-7 flowers. The pappus of the flowers is plumose.
Another species, L. mucronata DC., is very similar but has softer leaves which arch downward at the tips and a globose corm for a root. The flowers of both species are nearly always pink but plants with pure-white flowers are rarely found. Here is a white-flowered plant:

Liatris punctata white

Photographs taken at Tall Grass Prairie National Preserve, KS., 9-24-06.