For the fall garden look to nature out in the fields there is golden rod and wild, tall native asters covered with butterflies. However, hybrids have more color options, more blooms and larger blooms.

Asters belong to the family, Asteraceae that includes many plants one would not think of belonging to the aster family. In fact one out every 11 flowering species on Earth is a member.

The single characteristic that brings this family of flowers together is that the flower is actually the fusion of many minute flowers on one head. In the plant world the Asteraceae family has a monopoly on this characteristic.

Perennial and Annual varieties - the techniques in this file will work for both annual and perennial asters.  That is why we don't have an aster file in our Annuals section.

Size: Asters grow from one to six feet tall, depending on the variety.

Foliage: The foliage is a rich green.

Flowers: The bloom time for asters is from August through October picking up the color in the yard when the annuals are winding down. The flowers are daisy-like in appearance. The flower colors are mostly shades of pink and purple with some being totally white. The flowers do attract butterflies. An alternative to chrysanthemums.

In the Victorian language of flowers Michaelmas daisies represented after thought because it blooms so late. Named for St. Michael’s Day which falls on Sept 29, relatively late in the season for flowering plants. A pleasant surprise at that time of year has also come to symbolize cheerfulness in old age.

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