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Symphyotrichum cordifolium

Native Plants

Blue Wood Aster

2 Photos


Summary

Blue wood aster (Symphyotrichum cordifolium) is a floriferous, unfussy herbaceous perennial that grows vigorously in dry to moist, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. A basal cluster of sharply toothed, heart shaped leaves give rise to smooth, upright, gently arching 2-4’ tall stems. Stems terminate in open, small-leaved panicles of daisy-like flowers, ¾” wide, blooming in late summer to fall. Flowers typically have 8-20 pale blue to lavender petals with a butter-yellow center that matures to a deep violet. 

With its abundant floral display and late season blooming, blue wood aster is a valuable pollen and nectar source for migrating and overwintering bees and butterflies. It is a host plant for the Pearly Crescent butterfly, supports several specialist mining bees, and the seeds are enjoyed by songbirds.  

Blue wood aster shines in the naturalistic or pollinator garden combined with downy phlox (Phlox pilosa) and white wood aster (Eurybia divaricata) where its ease of seeding-in can be utilized. If using in the perennial border, cutting back after flowering is recommended to control its spread. Blue wood aster makes a good selection for the cut flower garden too. Plant height can be controlled with a pinching performed by mid July, which also results in a bushier plant. Formerly Aster cordifolius. Zones 3-8. 


More Details

  • Plant Type
    perennial 
  • Sun/Shade Conditions
    part-shade, shade 
  • Foliage Character
    deciduous 
  • Soil Moisture
    dry-to-moist 
  • Flowering Period
    early-to-mid-fall
  • Soil PH
    adaptable 
  • Flower Color
    light-purple, violet 
  • Summer Foliage Color
    green 
  • Fall Foliage Color
    tan 
  • Fruit/Seed Color
    brown