Fall Asters

Fall asters come as wildflowers and as garden plants purchased and installed. According to the definitive wild flower reference text, “The Illustrated Wildflowers and Shrubs” by William Carey Grimm, there are 75 different asters, from short to tall, from deep purple to white.

'Alma Potschke' is a bright New England aster variety

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Of the cultivated varieties, most are cultivars of Aster novo-angliae, or New England aster. I have ‘Alma Potschke’ in bloom right now, a deep rose-pink.  It grows to 3 or 4 feet tall, and although a few stems stand on their own, most were flopping until I recently staked them. Asters will grow in really crummy soil, and will take full sun or part shade.

Here's a nice tall aster, cultivar name unknown.

I also have some nice blue ones, and purple varieties. But some of my favorites are the diminutive light colored ones – white, lavender – that grow around the edges of my property. The feel like gifts from Mother Nature.

Wild aster variety, one of many growing on my property

Correction: For those 153 of you who read my last post in the first couple of hours after it went up on Wednesday, I need to apologize. I stated that the name of the anti-stress liquid for plants I use is called Nature’s Miracle. No, that is the stuff I use after my 20-year old cat, Winnie, pees on the floor. Sorry. The liquid I use for plants is called SUPERthrive. My bad. Actually, I refer to it as Monkey Juice, though don’t ask me why! 

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