Genus: Aster

Aster

Photo/Illustration: 
Courtesy of Bluestone Perennials
(Aster)
ASS-ter
Asteraceae
Aster is a large genus of 250 species of annuals, biennials, perennials, and subshrubs from many different kinds of habitats, mainly in North America. The flowers resemble small daisies, with yellow disk florets, and white, pink, blue, or purple ray florets. The leaves are generally alternate, simple, and lance-shaped. There is an aster for most any type of garden, including borders, rock gardens, waterside plantings, dry areas, and wildflower gardens.  
Noteworthy characteristics:  Daisy-like flowers in white or shades of pink, blue, or purple. Many attract butterflies and offer valuable late-season color.
Care:  Growth requirements vary among species, but all need either full sun or partial shade. Taller species should be staked in spring and may be cut back by one-half in late spring or early summer. See species reports for specific requirements.
Propagation: 

In spring or fall, sow seed in a cold frame, or divide or separate runners. Some species may be propagated from basal cuttings as well.

Problems: 

Verticillium wilt, gray mold, powdery mildew, rusts, white smut, aster yellows, and many fungal leaf spots and stem cankers are common. Asters are also prone to damage from slugs, snails, aphids, tarsonemid mites, and nematodes.

Species, varieties and clutivars for genus Aster

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Climbing Carolina aster
Ampelaster carolinianus
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New York aster
Aster dumosus
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Bushy Aster, Hardy Aster
Aster dumosus 'Wood's Pink'
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Heath aster
Aster ericoides
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Aster lateriflorus ‘Lady in Black’
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Bigleaf aster
Aster macrophyllus
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New England aster
Aster novae-angliae
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New England aster
Aster novae-angliae ‘Purple Dome'
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October skies aster
Aster oblongifolius 'October Skies'
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Tatarian aster
Aster tataricus
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East Indies aster
Aster tongolensis
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Aster  × frikartii
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'Wonder of Staffa' aster
Aster  × frikartii 'Wonder of Staffa'