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Aster azureus

Sky Blue Aster / Symphyotrichum oolentangiense

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This hardy native plant lights up the autumn garden with it's brilliant pale blue blooms. Found throughout the tallgrass prairie, Sky Blue Aster has addapted to a wide variety of locations from wet meadows to dry gravel outcrops. This is good news for the gardener because it will be happy in any sunny location! Attractive to butterflies and other nectar-loving insects.

Benefits

  • Outstanding blue-lavender daisy-like flowers
  • Loves full sun and is drought tolerant
  • Forms superb garden backdrop when planted in groups
  • Great food source for butterflies and birds
  • Attracts larger fowl to garden in late fall
  • Colorful blooms are great in fresh arrangements

Homeowner Growing and Maintenance Tips

Plant in average, dry or moist, well-drained soil in full sun. Sky Blue Aster is rather indifferent to soil characteristics, and can flourish in soil that is loamy, sandy, rocky, or contains clay. It is easy to grow and very drought tolerant, though it may get powdery mildew on lower leaves after experiencing drought stress.


Height
2-3 Feet

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Spread
24-30 Inches

USDA Hardiness Zone 3-9

Native Range

Aster azureus is found in dry or moist prairies, meadows, open woods, and rocky slopes from New York and Ontario to Saskatchewan and Minnesota south to Georgia, Alabama, Louisiana, and Texas.

Native Trivia

Late blooming asters are an important food source for butterflies and other beneficial insects in autumn.


"The caterpillars of the Silvery Checkerspot butterfly (Chlosyne nycteis) feed on this aster and its flowers provide nectar for many species of other butterflies."

Good Companions
Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium), Big Bluestem (Andropogon gerardii), Pink Muhlygrass (Muhlenbergia capillaris), Perennial Sunflower (Helianthus pauciflorus var. subrhomboideus x tuberosus)

Characteristics & Attributes

Plan Sub Group
  • Medium Perennials
Exposure
  • Filtered Shade
  • Sun
Soil
  • Well-drained
  • Wide soil tolerance
Soil Moisture Preference
  • Average
  • Dry
  • Moist
  • Moist but well-drained
Attracts Wildlife
  • Beneficial insects
  • Butterflies
Bloom Time
  • Fall
Habitat Collection
  • Butterfly
Native Habitat
  • Grassland
Foliage Color
  • Green
Uses
  • Border
  • Container
  • Cut or dried flower
  • Mass plant
  • Meadow
  • Naturalizes
  • Wind tolerant
Native to
  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Louisiana
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Nebraska
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • South Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Wisconsin