New England Aster

New England Aster

Symphyotrichum Novae-Angliae

Kingdom: Plantae

Phylum: Magnoliophyta

Class: Eudicots

Order: Asterales

Family: Asteraceae

Genus: Symphyotrichum

Species: Novae-Angliae

Where in the OLL?

This seed-bearing angiosperm is located in the meadow and wet soil of the OLL. It can also be found in the field. It is located there because it has an aesthetic beauty. It also provides pollen for insects during its blooming seasons, which is late. Additionally, it is found there because the view makes it easily accessible by bees, butterflies and wild animals (deer, wild turkeys) that feed on it. Most importantly, this plant helps to ensure late season pollination.

Plant growth form

Asters are herbs with above ground wood. They grow 3-6 feet tall and 2-3 feet wide. The plant dies during the winter because of the cold. It starts growing around mid-summer and establishes its full vegetation. At the ending of summer to the beginning of fall, it starts blooming. It has simple leaflets with alternate arrangement.

Flowers, fruits & pollinators

The flower is the reproductive organ. It contains both the stamen and the pistil. The ray floret contains the pistils (unisex: female), while the disk floret contains the stamen (bisexual: male).  The aster has composite flowers (a bunch of flowers that appears as one). Asters flower from August to September and late October. Its blooming colors are pink and purple. It has a perfect floral arrangement with both male and female reproductive organs.We do not need more than one specimen to get successful fruits. Because it’s a perfect flower, an individual species might be successful. Fruits are ready October to November and are edible by humans. Tea and root have been used for medicinal purposes to treat serious pains and mental illness.

Ideal location, conditions & cultural needs

Asters like full sun and clay soil with medium moisture and pH < 6.8.

Planning & maintenance

Asters spread vigorously. Its root is mostly divided after several growing seasons, mostly three to keep it growing vigorously. It can also be trimmed.

Cultivars & propagation

The division of the root is best for propagation.

Pests & pathogens

Asters can be affected by fungal stem rot, rust disease and powdery mildew, but these rarely cause serious problem. Asters can also have some cosmetic damage when infested with spider mites and lace bugs.

Landscape & ecosystem

The aster serves as an ornamental plant by beautifying the landscape. It blooms at the right time, when pollinators need pollen the most.

Human uses

Humans have use this plant for decorative and medicinal purposes. The flower is mostly used for decoration, while the root and stem is mostly used for healing and the leaves are something use to make tea for medicinal purposes. The family of aster is the largest in the world and the plant New England Aster is the world’s most advanced flower.

Plant catalogued by Hawa Tarawally
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