To add some interest and variety to your garden, you might be interested in growing plants that have star shaped flowers. Or, perhaps you just have a passion for these cute flowers and want to fill your garden with a variety of them.
We’ve done some digging and have found 15 plants that have cute and colorful flowers that look like stars you might want to consider growing.
1. African Starfish Flower (Stapelia hirsuta)
Photo Credit: Steve L Martin
We start off our list of star-shaped flowers with the most bizarre one that we could find. The African starfish is a succulent with upright green stems that can be quite angular and is literally a flower in the shape of a star. The flowers are quite amazing but can be variable from plant to plant. They have a diameter of around 5.6 inches (14 cm) and are one of my favorite star flowers.
2. Bellflower (Campanula spp.)
There are hundreds of different bellflowers but not all of them have star-shaped flowers. As the name would suggest, some of the blooms are more bell-shaped.
The Adriatic Bellflower or Dickinson’s Gold has pretty mauve star-shaped flowers. This is a fast-growing plant and needs to be given plenty of space to grow. This variety can even tolerate a light frost.
The Serbian Bellflower produces stunning star-shaped blooms in a rich purple color. This plant is extremely hardy and will grow in height to only 6 inches (15 cm). Be aware that this plant can spread quite quickly, so it could become invasive if you don’t keep it under control.
The Dalmatian Bellflower has the prettiest pale mauve star-shaped flowers with the petals curling slightly downward giving it a rather soft and delicate appearance. This plant grows happily in full sun but prefers to be kept moist at all times.
The Clustered Bellflower has striking purple blooms that cluster closely together on the ends of the flower stems. These stems can grow to a height of 24 inches (60 cm). This variety also prefers full sun and moist soil. However, the blooms only appear from late spring into early summer.
3. Chincherinchee (Ornithogalum thyrsoides)
Photo Credit: Consultaplantas
This is an interesting plant that belongs to the Hyacinthaceae family and is native to South Africa. It’s a perennial bulb that produces strappy green leaves and large flower spikes that can each contain around 30 white star-shaped flowers.
It’s quite common for the foliage to die down when the plant begins to bloom in late spring. This perennial will also multiply quite readily and is perfect for planting en masse in a garden bed or border. It can also be easily grown in a pot.
Plant the bulbs in the fall in a sunny spot that has well-drained soil. This lovely plant is even drought-hardy once it has become fully established. The blooms are also great for cut flowers and will last really well in a vase.
4. Grass Lily or Star-Of-Bethlehem (Ornithogalum umbellatum)
Photo Credit: Katja Schulz
This is another gorgeous bulb that flowers in mid to late spring. It produces strap-like leaves and the prettiest pure white star-shaped flowers that have a green throat. This is another plant that looks great when grown in large drifts. It will even grow happily under deciduous trees in the garden.
The soil needs to be well-drained and slightly acid. The pretty white flowers are filled with nectar and pollen and are a favorite with bees, butterflies, birds and other pollinators. However, you want to keep this away from your pets and children as it is toxic.
If you look closely at a fully opened hyacinth flower cluster, you’ll see that all the tiny individual flowers are star-shaped. Hyacinth are flowering bulbs and will delight you with their stunning blooms in spring. They come in a variety of colors but mainly in shades of pink, blue and purple.
Plants from the Hyacinthus orientalis species also have the most intense fragrance that can reach appreciative noses from some distance away. Currently, there are around 60 different cultivars that are grown commercially.
As they’re spring flowering bulbs, hyacinths are best planted in fall and can create a stunning display if planted in large groups. They can also be planted in pots or can even be grown indoors in a bulb vase.
Here are some common hyacinth hybrids that are freely available:
- ‘Hollyhock’ with reddish-pink blooms
- ‘Pink Pearl’ with dark pink petals that are edged with pale pink
- ‘Woodstock’ with dark purple blooms
- ‘Top White’ with snow-white blooms
- ‘Blue Jacket’ with blue to purple flowers
6. Impala Lily (Adenium multiflorum)
Photo Credit: Dellex
The impala lily is actually a deciduous succulent shrub or small tree. It has a multitude of fleshy stems that are heavily branched. The plant can grow as tall as 10 feet (3 meters). Being a deciduous plant, it doesn’t have either leaves or flowers for the most part of the year.
However, when the plant flowers, it sure is a sight to see. The individual flowers appear on inflorescences that grow on the ends of the branches. Each star-shaped flower can be up to 2.8 inches (7 cm) in diameter.
The petals are white or a delicate pink and they have crinkly red edges. As this plant is native to Africa, it does prefer to grow in a warm climate and appreciates full sun. However, you need to ensure that the soil is free-draining as the plant cannot handle having waterlogged roots.
7. Pentas lanceolata
Photo Credit: Taty2007
Pentas produce clusters of tightly packed star shaped flowers in a range of colors including red, pink white and mauve. These hardy plants are grown as annuals in areas with cold winters but can grow happily as perennials in sub-tropical and tropical regions.
If you do have the ability to grow these plants as perennials, they do benefit from a hard cut back if they become too woody and leggy. You can also encourage them to become more bushy by tip pruning them when they’re young.
To encourage constant flowering, you should deadhead pentas as soon as the flowers are finished. Although these plants will live happily in your garden, you can also grow them in pots as long as you keep them well-watered.
If not regularly pruned, pentas can reach a height of around 3 feet (90 cm) and a width of around 4 feet (120 cm). They prefer to grow in full sun and are particularly good at attracting pollinators to your garden.
Some popular varieties include:
- ‘Butterfly Light Lavender’ with pink flowers
- ‘Graffiti Bright Red’ with stunning red blooms
- ‘Graffiti Lipstick’ with hot pink flowers
- ‘Graffiti Pink’ with lovely dark pink flowers
- ‘Graffiti White’ with gorgeous snow-white flowers
8. Mountain Pretty Face (Triteleia ixioides ssp. anilina)
Photo Credit: Jane S Richardson
This is a perennial herb that is native to California. It grows naturally in open sandy spots. The plant will grow to a height of around 1.3 feet (40 cm). It grows from an underground corm and should produce offsets quite readily.
If you can find this plant commercially, it prefers to grow in a warm, sunny spot in well-drained sandy soil. It prefers to be kept moist during winter, spring and early summer but can handle a dry period between late summer and fall.
9. Rock Isotome (Isotoma axillaris)
This pretty little plant is native to Australia. It grows in rocky areas with shallow soil. The plant only grows to a height of around 15 inches (40 cm). It’s perfect for growing in rockeries and will flower profusely from mid-spring to late summer.
These plants prefer to grow in full sun and prefer not to be left to dry out. The foliage will generally die down after flowering. At this stage, you can cut the plant back quite hard as this will encourage new growth.
Take care when pruning these plants as they produce a white sap that can be irritating to the skin.
10. Spring Starflower (Tristagma uniflorum)
Photo Credit: Chihiro H
This gorgeous bulb was formerly known as Ipheion uniflorum but has recently had a name change. It grows as a grassy clump and has the prettiest star-shaped flowers. Many varieties are pale blue but they can also come in colors of white, purple and darker blue.
These plants should be grown in a partly shaded position in the garden and will multiply quite quickly to form thick clumps. These large clumps can easily be divided in summer when the plants become dormant. The strappy green leaves give off a garlic scent when crushed.
11. Star Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides)
Not only does this plant produce a profusion of white star shaped flowers but these also have the most delicious fragrance. The star jasmine is a climbing plant and best grown on a fence or sturdy trellis. It can also be grown on top of a wall where it can tumble down and fill the air with its sweet aroma.
Imagine this growing near your backdoor or adjacent to your outdoor entertainment area. When not in bloom, the glossy green leaves add a nice dimension to your garden. Some gardeners even clip their star jasmine into a low growing hedge to create separate spaces in their garden.
Star jasmine prefers to grow in full sun in an area protected from heavy frosts. To promote plenty of bushy growth, you should prune this plant regularly, especially when its young.
12. Star Magnolia (Magnolia stellata)
If you’ve never seen a star magnolia, nothing can prepare for the brilliance of these pure white flowers. They’re made even more spectacular because they bloom well before the deciduous tree has started to put on any new green growth. This usually happens in spring.
The star magnolia is a small tree and will grow to a height of around 13 feet (4 meters). It likes a sheltered spot in your garden that is either in full sun or part shade.
13. Striped Squill (Puschkinia scilloides)
This is a gorgeous flowering bulb that has been around since the 1800s. It’s a hardy plant that is both drought and frost tolerant. This makes it great for naturalizing in your garden. It’s only a low-growing plant reaching a maximum height of around 6 inches (15 cm).
What you’ll find quite delightful about this pretty flower is its spicy and alluring fragrance. The pretty flowers are white with a blue stripe down the center of each petal. Being one of the earliest blooming bulbs, you should expect to see some flowers pop up in late winter and very early spring.
This is another bulb that will die down over winter and come back every year. It will also multiply quite readily so your garden could be filled with these gorgeous blooms in just a few short years.
14. Yellow Star Tulip (Calochortus monophyllus)
Photo Credit: Larry Miller
This lovely little plant is a member of the lily family and is native to the US. It’s commonly found in California on wooded slopes in the Sierran foothills. It only grows to a height of around 8 inches (20 cm).
The leaves of the plant are grass-like but the bright yellow flowers are truly striking. They will generally bloom in April and May in the northern hemisphere. This dainty plant prefers to grow in part shade and likes well-drained loamy soil.
15. Zephyr Lily or Rain Lily (Zephyranthes candida)
Photo Credit: Juni
This gorgeous perennial bulb has pretty white star-shaped flowers that look like crocuses. Each flower can reach a diameter of 2 inches (5 cm). The beautiful snow-white petals are offset by the bright yellow or orange stamens. The leaves are grass-like and a rich green color.
In areas that experience only mild winters, this plant will retain its green foliage all year long. This is a spreading plant that is great when allowed to naturalize in a garden bed or along a border beside a path.
As these lovely plants are native to warm regions such as Argentina, Paraguay, southern Brazil and Uruguay, the bulbs will need to be dug up and stored indoors over winter in areas that experience cold weather during the winter months.