Aster Flower


Aster flower is a late summer bloomer that provides nectar all the way into fall until the first frost.  Aster is Latin meaning 'star' referring to the flower shape.  The English call them star worts, meaning 'root' which is referring to the healing properties that they enjoyed. 

We gardeners love these because they not only are flowers that attract butterflies, they are great hummingbird plants.  Other wildlife in garden settings that will be attracted is the American toad because of the moist soil that is preferred by the plant.

These perennial star flowers are common in North America and are
known as the Michaelmas daisy or
New England Aster Flower (Aster novae-angliae).  

The Michaelmas daisy is from the compositae / asteraceae family, made up of many flowering plants including another favorite butterfly plant in your butterfly garden, Rudbeckia hirta.

Michaelmas Daisy

Photo: Laws1964

These are very hardy and reliable growers.

We are familiar with seeing the little purple flowers growing wild along roadsides and streams at heights averaging about 4' to 6' tall. 

There are many other varieties that grow successfully in flower beds with moderate water. 

Colors include white, cream, pink, red, purple and blue.

Preferring full sun, all asters attract butterflies.  They grow in moist soils but are able to withstand other types of soil, as long as the moisture is there.  For information on click soil testing methods and how to test your soil.  The hardy flowering plant grows well in planting zones 4-9.

The types of butterflies that frequent the Asters include the Painted Lady butterflyPapilionidae), Common Sulphur butterfly (Pieridae) and the well known Monarch butterfly (Papilionidae).

The Aster plant is also a butterfly host plant for some butterfly species.  Always keep in mind if wanting to attract Monarchs that the only host plants they can use is are only those in the Milkweed family.

To learn more about these subjects click below:

For a more comprehensive understanding see Butterfly Information.

One these start to take root they are easy to propagate and transplant.  Growing in clumps, just divide and plant in other areas of your garden.

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