Aster sedifolius 'Nanus'
Common Name: aster
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asteraceae
Zone: 4 to 7
Height: 1.00 to 1.50 feet
Spread: 1.00 to 1.50 feet
Bloom Time: August to September
Bloom Description: Blue rays with yellow center disk
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Flower: Showy
Attracts: Butterflies

Culture

Easily grown in average, well-drained soils of medium moisture in full sun. Good air circulation helps reduce incidence of foliar diseases. May be grown from seed.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Aster sedifolius is native to Europe. It is a clump forming aster that features terminal sprays of 1.25” diameter asters (bluish-lilac rays with yellow centers) on generally weak stems rising 2-3’ (less frequently to 4’) tall. This species, sometimes commonly called Rhone aster, is infrequently sold in commerce because of the availability of the compact cultivar ‘Nanus’.

Genus name comes from the Latin word aster meaning star for the shape of the flowers.

‘Nanus’ typically grows to only 18” tall and features flowers that are slightly smaller than the species with ray flowers that are a darker blue. Lance-shaped, medium green leaves (to 2.5” long). Blooms from late summer to early fall. Flowers are attractive to butterflies.

Problems

No serious insect or disease problems. Asters in general have some susceptibility to powdery mildew. Aster wilt can also be an occasional problem, particularly if plants are grown in poorly-drained clay soils. Taller plants may require staking or other support. Foliage tends to decline by late summer to early fall.

Garden Uses

Borders, cottage gardens or butterfly gardens.