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FutureStarrAster Novae Angliae
Aster Novae Angliae is a blog written by my husband and I about the astronomical events in the solar system. We hope that you find it interesting and useful.New England aster generally grows in wet environments but also has been found in dry soil or sand. The seeds and nectar of this mostly conservationally secure species, which blooms August to November, are important to a wide variety of animals, including birds, bees, and butterflies. It has been introduced to Europe, Central Asia, Hispaniola, New Zealand, and some western states and provinces of North America.
The naturally-occurring hybrid species of New England aster and white heath aster (Symphyotrichum ericoides) is named Symphyotrichum × amethystinum and is commonly known as amethyst aster. It can grow where the two parents are in close proximity. There are roughly 50 cultivars of Symphyotrichum novae-angliae available, including the award-winners 'Brunswick', 'Helen Picton', and 'James Ritchie'. It has been used by indigenous Americans, such as the Cherokee, Iroquois, and Potawatomi, to heal multiple ailments.The species' former genus, Aster, comes from the Ancient Greek word á¼€στÎ®ρ (astá¸—r), meaning "star", referring to the shape of the flower. The word "aster" was used to describe a star-like flower as early as 1542 in De historia stirpium commentarii insignes, a book by the German physician and botanist Leonhart Fuchs. An old common name for Astereae species using the suffix "-wort" is "starwort", also spelled "star-wort" or "star wort".
An early use of this name can be found in the same work by Fuchs as Sternkraut, translated from German literally as "star herb" (Stern Kraut).Prune your (well established and flourishing) New England Aster plants between Memorial Day and the Fourth of July (depending upon how far north or south you live). Cut each stem height down to about 1/2 its original height. The pruning encourages each cut stem to send out new shoots where it has been cut, making the plant much more bushy. Once July gets underway don't remove any more new growth from your aster plant. The plant will need time to develop the buds that become flowers in fall.Note: Asters are one of the top perennials used by lepidoptera for egg laying, and numersous species of butterflies and moths lay their eggs on them. Rather than throwing the cuttings away, lay them on the ground at the base of the plant, so that any existing caterpillars can find the plant and continue their growth cycle. (Source: www.prairienursery.com)