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Symphyotrichum laeve

Common Name(s):
Smooth aster
Cultivar(s):
'Bluebird'
Categories:
Herbs, Native Plants, Perennials, Wildflowers
Comment:

Attracts butterflies.

Smooth Aster is a herbaceous perennial that may grow 2 to 4 feet tall. The leaves alternate and are egg-shaped with a smooth margin. The leaves partly encircle the stem. Violet to blue flowers with a yellow center mature in early September to early October. The herb produces a dry, one seeded fruit (achene) tipped with red bristles.

Regions: Mountains, Piedmont

Seasons of Interest:

     Bloom: Fall; Fruit/Nut/Seed: Winter

Wildlife Value: Host plant for the Pearl Crescent butterfly. Flowers are attractive to bees and butterflies. Songbirds and small mammals eat the seeds. Members of the genus Symphyotrichum support the following specialized bees: Andrena (Callandrena s.l.) asterisAndrena (Callandrena s.l.) asteroidesAndrena (Cnemidandrena) hirticinctaAndrena (Cnemidandrena) nubeculaAndrena (Callandrena s.l.) placataAndrena (Callandrena s.l.) simplexand Colletes simulans.

Height:
2-4 ft.
Flower Color:
Lavender
Hardiness:
4-8
Flower:
Blooms in fall September-October with showy lavender purple blooms
Zones:
3-8
Habit:
Upright
Propagation:
Seed, self seeds easily
Exposure:
Full sun to partial shade
Soil:
Moist to Dry
Tags:
bees, fall color, nectar, pollinator, specialized bees, fall interest, wildlife butterflies, native bees

NCCES plant id: 3171

Symphyotrichum laeve 'Bluebird' Upright form
Cliff, CC BY - 2.0
Symphyotrichum laeve 'Bluebird' Flowers from a second year plant.
Tom Potterfield, CC BY-NC-SA - 2.0
Symphyotrichum laeve 'Bluebird' Symphyotrichum laeve 'Bluebird'
Debbie Roos