Liatris punctata also known as Dotted Blazing Star by Tash


Drawing of Liatris punctata © 1sagebrush19.

Lakota name: Tat’ é cannuga. In Lakota Liatris punctata means wind-lumped wood.
sound iconListen to Lakota Plant Name: tatí ť cannuga

Scientific name: Liatris punctata

Common name: dotted blazing star

Lakota medicinal uses: the roots are pulverized to increase one’s appetite. 

Uses by other cultures: Some plain tribes used the stems as a survival food, but it was generally used as a medicine. Most of the species of Liatris have roots that contain inulin, a polysaccharide obtained from the roots of certain plants which can’t be metabolized by humans, but it is considered a mild liver and kidney tonic.  Plain tribes made blazing star tea which was used to treat kidney, bladder, and menstrual problems, water retention, gonorrhea, colic, throat inflamination, and laryngitis.  It was gargled to soothe sore throats.  Roots are mashed and applied to snake bites. They  also simmered them in honey to make a cough syrup. In New Mexico they burned dry roots like incense and the smoke was inhaled to relieve headaches and nosebleeds, and blown into the throat to cure inflamed tonsils.

Distribution: Liatris punctata is native to the United States.  It is endangered and it has no heritage rank. Its growth habitat is herbaceous. It is found in 19 states: Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. It is Endangered in Michigan, and Wisconsin. It is found in 35 of South Dakota’s counties.

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Liatris punctata var. nebraskana © Merel R. Black

Description: Some similar species include Liatris pycnostachya, Liatris scariosa, Liatris spicata, Liatris aspera, and Liatris graminifolia.  Its fruiting period begins in the summer and ends in the fall. When it blooms, it is purple. Dotted blazing star grows about 3 feet high. It has many stems, and it resembles a low shrub and can grow in regions above 7000 feet. Existing or potential threats are fire, deer, and other wildlife that like to eat plants.

Some comments I had about this project are as following- I kind of enjoyed doing this project. It was something different, and it was better than doing something with a text book. I think that maybe we could do another one but not about plants, maybe animals.   

Learning Information

About This Page

Author: 1sagebrush19
Classroom Project: Medicinal Plants of the Lakota Sioux
Lead-Deadwood High School
Lead, South Dakota United States

License: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License - Version 3.0

Correspondence regarding this page should be directed to , Lead-Deadwood High School

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