Symphyotrichum laeve 'Bluebird'

Tried and Trouble-free Recommended by 2 Professionals
Common Name: smooth aster
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asteraceae
Zone: 4 to 8
Height: 2.50 to 3.00 feet
Spread: 2.00 to 2.50 feet
Bloom Time: September to October
Bloom Description: Violet blue rays with yellow center
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy
Attracts: Butterflies
Tolerate: Drought, Erosion, Dry Soil, Shallow-Rocky Soil

Culture

Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soil in full sun. Good drought tolerance. Staking is usually not required, so pinching back the stems to control plant height is not necessary.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Symphyotrichum laeve, commonly called smooth aster, is a Missouri native that typically occurs in prairies, rocky glades, dry open woods, roadside banks and thickets. Stems are usually unbranched with variable, mostly toothed, smooth, bluish green foliage. Small flowers (.75 to 1.25" across) with violet blue to purple (sometimes white) rays and yellow center disks appear in open, loose, panicle-like clusters in autumn. Attractive to butterflies.

Genus name comes from the Greek symph meaning coming together and trich meaning hair in possible reference to the flower anthers.

Specific epithet means smooth.

'Bluebird' is a robust, upright plant with arching stems. Typically grows to 3' tall. Loose panicle-like clusters of 1" diameter asters with violet blue rays and yellow centers cover the upper parts of this plant in a profuse September-October bloom. Smooth, mostly toothless, blue-green foliage (to 4" long). Attractive to butterflies. Species is a Missouri native.

Problems

No serious insect or disease problems. Excellent mildew resistance. Rarely needs staking.

Garden Uses

Borders, cottage gardens, meadows.