Masterwort Astrantia major 'Stardust'

👤 Non-toxic to humans
🐾 Non-toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Not edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
masterwort 'Stardust'


Astrantia major 'Stardust', commonly known as Great Masterwort, features a captivating appearance with a unique floral display. The blossoms of this plant are composed of delicate, star-like bracts that form a ruff surrounding a tight cluster of tiny, central florets. These bracts are typically a soft, pale pink tinged with green, sometimes with hints of silver, which lend the flowers a luminous, ethereal quality reminiscent of a star-studded night sky, hence the cultivar name 'Stardust'. The individual flowers come together to form a pincushion-like inflorescence that is both intricate and striking. The leaves of Great Masterwort are deeply lobed and somewhat rough in texture, with a fresh green color that serves as a lovely contrast to the elaborate flowers. The foliage gracefully emanates from branching stems, creating a mound of decorative leaves that add to the overall aesthetic appeal of the plant throughout the growing season. Great Masterwort blooms during the summer months, and the flowers are highly attractive to pollinators such as bees and butterflies, making it a beneficial addition to any garden focused on supporting local wildlife. The charm of Astrantia major 'Stardust' lies not only in its delightful flowers but also in its overall poise and presence in a garden setting, where its blossoms add both color and a fairy-tale quality.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Synonyms

      Great Masterwort, Hattie's Pincushion, Melancholy Gentleman, Masterwort

    • Common names

      Astrantia major.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Masterwort (Astrantia major 'Stardust') is not commonly known to be toxic to humans. There is limited information available on the toxicity of this particular cultivar. However, it is always advisable to exercise caution and avoid ingesting any part of ornamental plants. In case any parts of the plant are ingested and adverse effects are experienced, seek medical advice promptly.

    • To pets

      Masterwort (Astrantia major 'Stardust') is not widely recognized as a toxic plant to pets. Similar to the advice for humans, there is limited specific information on the toxicity of this cultivar to pets. Typically, it is best to prevent pets from consuming any part of ornamental plants to avoid potential gastrointestinal upset or other adverse reactions. If a pet ingests some part of the plant and any negative symptoms ensue, consulting with a veterinarian is recommended.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      1-2 feet (30-60 cm)

    • Spread

      1-2 feet (30-60 cm)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Attracts pollinators: Astrantia major 'Stardust', commonly known as Masterwort, is attractive to bees and butterflies which helps in pollination.
    • Low maintenance: Masterwort is a hardy perennial that generally requires minimal care once established in an appropriate setting.
    • Drought resistant: It has good tolerance to short periods of drought, making it suitable for gardens with less frequent watering.
    • Long blooming period: Masterwort produces flowers for an extended period, often from early summer to early fall, providing lasting garden interest.
    • Works well in mixed borders: Its unique star-shaped flowers blend well with other plants in mixed bed plantings.
    • Cut flower potential: The blooms are suitable for cutting and can add a whimsical touch to floral arrangements.
    • Deer resistant: The plant is typically resistant to deer, which can be beneficial for gardeners in areas prone to deer browsing.
    • Architectural interest: With its pincushion-like flower heads and mounding habit, Masterwort adds architectural interest to the garden landscape.
    • Shade tolerance: It can perform well in partial shade, offering options for gardeners with less sunny spots.
    • Non-invasive: Masterwort is not known for aggressive growth or invasive habits, making it a good citizen in the garden.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Astrantia major 'Stardust' can be used as a natural dye, offering a range of subtle colors to fabrics or wool, depending on the mordant used.
    • The plant's seed heads can be sprayed with metallic paint and used as unique additions to floral arrangements or wreaths, providing a touch of whimsy or sparkle.
    • Dried seed heads of Astrantia can be incorporated into potpourri mixes, adding texture and visual interest to the blend.
    • Pressed flowers of Astrantia can be utilized in the craft of flower pressing, often used to create artful bookmarks or decorate homemade paper.
    • The structural form of the flower heads can inspire artistic designs and patterns for textiles, wallpapers, and other surface design applications.
    • Astrantia can be planted in outdoor fairy gardens to create a magical and enchanting small-scale landscape, drawing on the plant's intricate bloom structure.
    • Photographers might use Astrantia as a photogenic subject for macro photography, capturing the detailed beauty of its flowers.
    • The sturdy stems and distinctive flowers of Astrantia make it ideal for use in educational models to teach about plant biology and pollination.
    • Leaves of Astrantia can be used as subtle green additions to culinary presentation, but be wary of ingestion as the plant's edibility has not been established.
    • Eco-printing artists can use the leaves and flowers of Astrantia to leave beautiful prints on fabric or paper, through direct transfer techniques.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    Masterwort is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    Masterwort is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Mystery and Magic: The star-like shape of the Astrantia major 'Stardust' flowers, along with the 'Stardust' name, evoke an association with the celestial and the mysterious magic of the night sky.
    • Protection: In traditional herbal medicine, Astrantia was considered a plant that offered protection, and this symbolism has carried over into its modern interpretation.
    • Perseverance and Longevity: Astrantia major is a hardy plant that can thrive in various conditions, symbolizing resilience and the ability to persist through challenges.
    • Unity and Diversity: The composite structure of its flowers, where many small flowers come together to form a single head, can represent unity in diversity or the coming together of many parts to form a whole.
    • Beauty and Elegance: The delicate and intricate details of the Astrantia's flowers are often associated with grace and natural beauty.

Every 1-2 weeks
2500 - 10000 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Early spring
As needed
  • water dropWater

    Masterwort requires consistent moisture, so it is important to water it thoroughly when the top inch of soil feels dry. Generally, this might mean watering every week, particularly in periods of drought or high heat. Each watering session should involve providing enough water to soak the root zone, which often equates to around 1 gallon for a mature plant. It's vital to avoid overhead watering to prevent fungal diseases, so it's best to water at the base of the plant.

  • sunLight

    Masterwort thrives best in partial shade, especially in areas with hot summers. It can tolerate full sun in cooler climates, but in regions with intense sunlight, it is optimal to provide some afternoon shade to protect it from scorching. A spot that receives dappled sunlight throughout the day is ideal for the plant to flourish.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Masterwort is cold-hardy and can withstand temperatures down to about 0°F, but it performs best when temperatures range between 65°F and 75°F during the growing season. It should not be exposed to temperatures above 85°F for extended periods, as extreme heat can cause stress to the plant.

  • scissorsPruning

    Masterwort should be pruned to remove spent flowers and encourage a second bloom. Deadheading, or the removal of fading flowers, should be done regularly throughout the blooming season to maintain the plant's vigorous appearance and promote additional flowering. A more extensive pruning can be done after the first frost, cutting the plant back to the ground to prepare for winter dormancy.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Great Masterwort 'Stardust' prefers fertile, moist but well-draining soil with neutral to slightly alkaline pH levels of around 7.0. A mix of garden soil, compost, and a bit of coarse sand or perlite can create an ideal environment for this plant.

  • plantRepotting

    Great Masterwort 'Stardust' should be repotted every 2-3 years to refresh the soil and provide room for growth. It's best to repot in the spring before new growth begins.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Great Masterwort 'Stardust' thrives in average to high humidity levels, similar to its natural woodland habitat. There's no need for extraordinarily high humidity, but it shouldn't dry out too much.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Place Great Masterwort 'Stardust' in bright, indirect light and keep soil moist.

    • Outdoor

      Plant Great Masterwort 'Stardust' in partial shade, keep soil moist.

    • Hardiness zone

      4-7 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    Astrantia major 'Stardust', commonly known as Great Masterwort 'Stardust', begins its life cycle as a seed that germinates in early spring after a period of cold stratification. Seedlings grow into rosettes of lobed leaves, and as the plant matures, it develops a strong root system. In late spring to summer, strong stems arise from the foliage, crowned by umbels of tiny flowers surrounded by bracts with a star-like appearance, giving rise to the name 'Stardust'. After pollination by insects, these flowers produce seed heads that can be dispersed by wind or wildlife. The plant typically dies back to the ground in winter but is a herbaceous perennial, meaning its roots survive to regrow the next spring. Over time, Great Masterwort 'Stardust' can form larger clumps by slowly spreading through rhizomatous growth.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Early spring

    • Astrantia major 'Stardust', commonly known as Masterwort 'Stardust', is commonly propagated through division, which is best done in either spring or autumn. During this process, you would carefully lift the clump of the plant from the ground, making sure to keep a good amount of soil around the roots. Once lifted, use a sharp spade or knife to divide the clump into smaller sections, ensuring each new section has both roots and shoots. Replant the divisions at the same depth they were originally growing and water them thoroughly. This will encourage the new plants to establish themselves, leading to a successful propagation.