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AHeart Leaf Aster

AHeart Leaf Aster

Heart Leaf Aster

Symphyotrichum cordifolium (Heart-leaved Aster) matures to 3' in height and has light blue flowers. It prefers medium to medium-dry soil conditions, and blooms approximately from September to October. Heart-leaved Aster grows best in partial shade but will tolerate nearly full shade and nearly full sun. Also known as Blue Wood Aster, it has wonderful array of blue flowers attracts butterflies and bees, and also makes an excellent cut flower. Other names are Blue Wood Aster and Aster cordifolius.

Aster

Symphyotrichum cordifolium (Heart-leaved Aster) matures to 3' in height and has light blue flowers. It prefers medium to medium-dry soil conditions, and blooms approximately from September to October. Heart-leaved Aster grows best in partial shade but will tolerate nearly full shade and nearly full sun. Also known as Blue Wood Aster, it has wonderful array of blue flowers attracts butterflies and bees, and also makes an excellent cut flower. Other names are Blue Wood Aster and Aster cordifolius.A shade loving aster? Why yes indeed. Found in dry, organic rich woodlands and forest margins in part shade. Name comes from the lower heart-shaped leaves. Tolerates full shade or sun, but will do best in part shade. Beautiful branching clusters of pale blue flowers bring visual excitement in late fall for a few weeks. Great source of nectar and opportunity to pollinate for bees and butterflies.

Flowers have two types of florets - ray and disc. The ray florets can be white or pale blue as shown here, - in sun they are usually blue. These usually number 10 to 16 and are pistillate (fertile). The ray florets surround 10 to 15 pale yellow, tubular, disc florets which, like most asters of this genus, turn reddish at maturity. These are bisexual and fertile. The disc floret throat has five triangular lobes which open erect to slightly spreading. The anthers of the 5 stamens surround and are appressed to the style, which has appendages at its tip. The style and stamens are exserted from the corolla throat when the floret opens. The heads are 1/2 - 3/4 inch wide. Each head has a short stalk (a peduncle). Above the leafy bracts on each flower stalk and surrounding the head, are 4 to 6 series of phyllaries that are unequal in size, linear to oblong is shape, whitish on the margins with a central green stripe that ends in a somewhat diamond shape.Comparisons: The most likely species in our area to confuse with this one in overall appearance and especially in the shape of the lower leaves are the White Wood Aster, E. divaricata, or the Bigleaf Aster, Eurybia macrophylla. Differences are that E. macrophylla has white petals with little or no lilac color, and the flowers are in a flat-topped cluster. E. divaricata also has flat-topped clusters and has a group of basal leaves in addition to stem leaves. The ray petals of both Eurybia species also look different. (Source: www.friendsofthewildflowergarden.org)

 

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