Centaurea americana  - Basket of Beauty

Basket Flower
Photo of Centaurea americana taken 5/28/2016 along Texas 220 near Glen Rose, Texas

Centaurea americana (Asteraceae)
Common names: American basket-flower, American star-thistle, Basket-Flower, basketflower, Star thistle, Shaving brush
Blooms: May, Jun
Species details: https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=ceam2
Purchase seeds: http://www.seedsource.com/catalog/detail.asp?product_id=1010

I first saw this lavender-pink beauty in a field near me. It covered a very large area. That area was later turned into a hiking trail and sadly the large displays are gone due to constant mowing. However, the trail encompasses a 2-mile area of dense trees and shrubs. Along the edges of this wooded area, you can still find this wildflower thriving.

Easy to grow and requires little water. This fragrant beautiful wildflower is an excellent addition to your native plant garden, or prairie of any size. If you had this in your garden now, you could enjoy cut flowers from it for almost a week.

It gets the name basket-flower from the pattern the bracts make:

Basket Flower
Basket-like bracts below flower head - 5/28/2016 along Texas 220 near Glen Rose, Texas

Locations: It is found mostly in areas that drain well, but can be found through much of Texas where there are openings in brush/trees, meadows, and rolling plains/prairies. I have found it locally in San Antonio; side roads along I-35; Texas 220 and US 67; Texas 173; Brown RD,Poteet, Texas.

Photos: Some of my photos of this lovely wildflower: http://www.pbase.com/richo/basketflower