Photo of Symphyotrichum novae-angliae

Symphyotrichum novae-angliae

New England Aster

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Attractive, purple flowers with yellow centers have a long bloom period; making this perennial a welcome addition to your native garden.

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New England Aster is one of the showiest asters. It boasts a large number of flowers with a long bloom period that extends from the end of summer through fall, and even until the first frost. It can grow quite tall, and may need staking to keep the plant erect. Pruning stems before mid-summer will control plant height and promote bushiness, while adding structure and support. It requires moist, rich soil and will be suseptible to disease if not planted in appropriate conditions. It naturally occurs in wet meadows and along stream banks. Plant New England Aster in your perennial bed with plenty of moisture, in a moist meadow or wet woodland edge, or next to a pond. Mass together with native goldenrod for beautiful, contrasting fall color.

Wildlife Value: Visited by long-tongued bees, short-tongued bees, syrphid flies, bee flies, Monarchs, small butterflies and skippers, all searching for nectar or pollen. New England Aster is a host plant for caterpillars of Pearl Crescent butterfly (Phyciodes tharos) and checkerspot butterflies, as well as various moths. The seeds are eaten by birds. 

Plant Details:

Other Scientific Names: Aster novae-angliae

Plant Type: Flower, Perennial

New Jersey Native: Yes

Bloom Times: Late Summer to Fall

Bloom Colors: Pink, Purple

Deer Resistance: Some

Attracts Pollinators and Wildlife: Bees and Other Pollinators, Butterflies, Birds

Salt Tolerance: Unknown

Hardiness Zone: 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b

Physiographic Region: All Regions in NJ

Soil Characteristics

Soil Type: Loam, Organic, Sandy, Clay

Soil Moisture: Moist

Soil pH: Acidic, Slightly Acidic, Neutral

Light Needs of Plant

Optimal Light: Partial Shade

Light Range: Full Sun, Partial Shade

Water Needs of Plant

Soil Moisture: Moist

Drought Tolerance: Low

Size and Growth Rate

Height: 2.5 - 6 ft

Spread: 2 - 3 ft

Growth Rate: Medium