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Illuminator Meadow Rue

Thalictrum flavum 'Illuminator'

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Illuminator Meadow Rue (Thalictrum flavum 'Illuminator') at Squak Mountain Nursery

Illuminator Meadow Rue foliage

Illuminator Meadow Rue foliage

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Plant Height:  3 feet

Flower Height:  4 feet

Spacing:  18 inches

Sunlight:  partial shade  full shade 

Hardiness Zone:  4


A fantastic selection from a very fine species with columns of steely blue foliage arising in spring, turning to a glaucous green; stately stems topped with bright yellow-green flowers in early summer; lovely massed along borders; will readily naturalize

Ornamental Features

Illuminator Meadow Rue's attractive ferny leaves emerge steel blue in spring, turning lime green in color on a plant with an upright spreading habit of growth. As an added bonus, the foliage turns a gorgeous olive green in the fall. It features dainty panicles of yellow star-shaped flowers with buttery yellow overtones rising above the foliage in early summer. The flowers are excellent for cutting. The olive green stems can be quite attractive.

Landscape Attributes

Illuminator Meadow Rue is an herbaceous perennial with an upright spreading habit of growth. It brings an extremely fine and delicate texture to the garden composition and should be used to full effect.

This is a relatively low maintenance plant, and should be cut back in late fall in preparation for winter. It is a good choice for attracting bees and butterflies to your yard, but is not particularly attractive to deer who tend to leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Illuminator Meadow Rue is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • Mass Planting
  • General Garden Use
  • Naturalizing And Woodland Gardens

Planting & Growing

Illuminator Meadow Rue will grow to be about 3 feet tall at maturity extending to 4 feet tall with the flowers, with a spread of 24 inches. When grown in masses or used as a bedding plant, individual plants should be spaced approximately 18 inches apart. It grows at a medium rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for approximately 10 years. As an herbaceous perennial, this plant will usually die back to the crown each winter, and will regrow from the base each spring. Be careful not to disturb the crown in late winter when it may not be readily seen!

This plant does best in partial shade to shade. It does best in average to evenly moist conditions, but will not tolerate standing water. It is particular about its soil conditions, with a strong preference for rich, acidic soils. It is somewhat tolerant of urban pollution. This is a selection of a native North American species. It can be propagated by division; however, as a cultivated variety, be aware that it may be subject to certain restrictions or prohibitions on propagation.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight Soil pH Preference
Accent  Massing  Garden  Naturalizing 
Flowers  Foliage Color  Fall Color  Texture  Bark  Attracts Wildlife 
Ornamental Features

Disclaimer - This Plant Finder tool is an online resource representing many of the varieties that we carry over the course of the season, and is intended for informational purposes only. Inventory varies seasonally, so we cannot guarantee that every plant will be in stock at all times - please contact the store directly for availability. It does not include our entire inventory of plants, so be sure to visit our store to see varieties that may not be represented on this list.