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Symphyotrichum oblongifolium

Previously known as:

  • Aster oblongifolius var. angustatus
Phonetic Spelling
sim-fy-oh-TRY-kum ob-long-ee-FOH-lee-um
Description

Aromatic aster is a native perennial wildflower that's name comes from the balsam-like fragrance it gives off when its rigid stems are crushed. The simple,oblong, alternate leaves are .5–3 inches long. The flowers are composite of approximately 30 purple ray flowers and yellow disk flowers. The bracts are glandular with long, green, loose or spreading tips. Fruits are flat, hairy achenes . It spreads by stolons.

USDA Plant Fact Sheet

Habitat: Rock outcrops and dry woodlands over limestone, calcareous shale

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Fannys'
  • 'Raydons Favorite'
    More compact
'Fannys', 'Raydons Favorite'
Tags:
#bees#drought tolerant#fall flowers#purple flowers#blue flowers#NC native#pollinator plant#poor soils tolerant#food source fall#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#food source hard-mast fruit#butterfly friendly#audubon
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
  • 'Fannys'
  • 'Raydons Favorite'
    More compact
'Fannys', 'Raydons Favorite'
Tags:
#bees#drought tolerant#fall flowers#purple flowers#blue flowers#NC native#pollinator plant#poor soils tolerant#food source fall#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#food source hard-mast fruit#butterfly friendly#audubon
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Symphyotrichum
    Species:
    oblongifolium
    Family:
    Asteraceae
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    U.S.A. to North East Mexico
    Wildlife Value:
    Pollinator plant
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Perennial
    Habit/Form:
    Erect
    Spreading
    Growth Rate:
    Medium
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3a, 3b, 4b, 4a, 5b, 5a, 6b, 6a, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Achene
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    Achenes with small turfs of light brown hair are distributed by the wind. Displays from October to November
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Purple/Lavender
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Head
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Good Cut
    Long-lasting
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Flower Shape:
    Radial
    Flower Petals:
    more than 20 petals/rays
    Flower Size:
    1-3 inches
    Flower Description:
    1-1.5 inch wide composite flowers have 25-30 blue-purple rays with yellow center disc flowers. Blooms from September to October. One of the last flowers blooming before a heavy frost.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Fragrant
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Oblanceolate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    2-3 inch long by .5 inch wide simple, clasping, alternate, oblong leaves with entire margins. Become smaller as they ascend the stem. Fragrant when crushed.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Green
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    Yes
    Stem Cross Section:
    Round
    Stem Form:
    Straight
    Stem Surface:
    Hairy (pubescent)
    Stem Description:
    Slightly pubescent round green stems turn brown with age.
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Poor Soil