These flowers grew out of the soil when Greek goddess Asterea cried

Amazing Aster

One of the legends associated with the aster flowers says, that when the Greek goddess Asterea looked at earth and could not find any stars, she cried. The flowers grew out of the soil, wherever her tears fell.

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Asters are also known as the frost flowers, and are one of the preferred choice for the flower arrangements in fall and winter.

The most popular ones are Monte Casino and the New England aster. Smooth Aster, Many-Flowered Aster, Purple dome, Alma Potschke, September ruby, Hella lucy, Puff white, Magic dark blue, and Jin dai are few of the other popular ones.

They depend on insects for the purpose of pollination. The seeds of a type of aster that is referred to as Bushy aster, are spread all over the place by the wind.

Facts About Asters

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  • Aster plants are mostly coarse-growing, leafy-stemmed plants that are occasionally slightly woody at the base.

  • Most of the Asters are perennials, but a few are annuals and biennials.

  • All Asters have alternate, simple leaves that are untoothed or toothed but rarely lobed.

  • The leaves of the Aster plant are often dark green and, like the flower petals, can also be long, thin and pointed.

  • Asters generally bloom in late summer and fall, but Alpine asters (Aster alpinus) flower in May and June.

  • The two main groups of Asters are New England Asters (Aster novae anglias) and New York Asters (Aster nova belgii).

  • Asters are one of the easiest garden perennials to cultivate.

  • Asters’ biggest problem is powdery mildew.

  • Asters are used as food plants by the larvae of a number of Lepidoptera species.

  • Asters are oftentimes a prime target for birds, bees and butterflies because they are fragrant and colorful.

  • Many species of Asters are drought resistant. Asters depend on insects to pollinate them. Some insects that take pollen from one plant to another include bees, butterflies, and flies.

  • The seeds of Bushy Asters are small achenes, and look like parachutes, which usually spread by wind.

  • The China Aster (Callistephus cinensis), also a Compositae, a native of China, is related to the true Asters.

How to grow and care Aster plants

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These plants love sunlight, however, you can also choose a shady corner of your garden for them. The type of soil in which they are planted matters. The plants prefers well-drained soil.

The drainage of water prevents the rotting of the plant roots. Dig holes for the plants. The distance between the plant holes should not be less than 18 inches and more than 24 inches.

Before planting them, apply a dose of fertilizers, preferably organic, to these holes, lightly. Mulch the beds with organic compost. This prevents water evaporation from the soil, around the plants and provides nourishment for them.

Water the beds to keep the soil around the plants moist. After the plants have taken root and have grown as a healthy plant, it is necessary to stake it in the late summer. Caring for these plants in the proper way will support them and prevent them from flopping over because of its own weight.

In the late winter, when the plant withers, cut its stem close to the ground. It is difficult not to fall in love with these blooms. They are simple, and easy to tend and care for. Most of them appear at the end of growing season to make the world full of colors.

How to grow Asters from seeds

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  • Asters prefer climates with cool, moist summers, especially cool night temperatures.

  • Select a site with full sun to partial sun.

  • Soil should be moist, well-drained, and average to humus-rich.

  • Plany asters in early- to mid-spring. Fertilize soil prior to planting.

  • While the plant can be grown from seed, germination can be uneven. You can start the seeds indoors during the winter by sowing seeds in pots or flats and keeping them in the refrigerator for 4 to 6 weeks. After 4 to 6 weeks, put the seeds in a sunny spot.

  • Set seeds one inch deep.

  • Many gardeners purchase a potted plant from the nursery.

  • Space asters 1 to 3 feet apart, depending on the type.

  • Water plants in well. Add mulch after planting to keep soil cool and prevent weeds.If you’re replanting shoots, use vigorous, young shoots to ensure best growth.

  • Add a thin layer of compost with a 2–inch layer of mulch around the plants every spring.

  • If you receive less than 1 inch of rain a week, remember to water your plants regularly during the summer. However, many asters are moisture-sensitive; if your plants have too much moisture or too little moisture, they will often lose their lower foliage or not flower well.

  • Keep an eye out for any stressed plants and try a different watering method if your plants are losing flowers.

  • Stake the tall variesties in order to keep them upright and remember to pinch the young shoots to encourage bushiness.

  • Cut asters back in winter after the foliage has died.

  • Divide every 2 to 3 years in the spring to maintain your plant’s vigor and flower quality.

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