Aster is the month flower of September. This perennial flower is like a Daisy and it blooms during the summer season. The flowers of Aster have been used all around the world for floral designs and flower arrangements for special occasions and events like birthdays. For someone who has just about everything in life, a bouquet of Aster is a perfect gift. Meanwhile, here are some facts about the flowers of asters, including its history, meanings and symbolism, and proper care by our expert florist:
From the family of Asteraceae in Asterales order, Aster is known to many as Starworts, Frost flower, and Michaelmas Daisies. It is found in the wilds of North America and Southern Europe. Some species are also found in South America. In 600 and more species found all around the world, there is a wide range of colors available for this flower genus. The name Aster was derived from a Greek word that refers to star.
In ancient times, the flowers of Asters were smoked and burned to ward off and put away the negative energy in the area. Aside from that, early people in the native tribes also used its blooms as a medicinal treatment for colds and flu, headaches, and muscle pain.
In Greek mythology, it has been believed that the flower was made from the teardrops of Astraea, a Greek goddess.
In some regions, Asters have been used to show grief for the death of a loved one. However, in some places in different countries, this flower is also used to symbolize lasting love, feminine energy, patience, and good luck wishes. The star shape of this flower is also symbolic of wisdom and achievement.
A beautiful and colorful bouquet of Asters is a symbol of heartfelt wishes that will come true. The celebrant or recipient of the bouquet will have good spirits and energy to make things happen. In the Victorian era, it represents charm and daintiness. Moreover, different colors of Aster mean different things. The purple Aster means wisdom, royalty, and majesty, while the white one is for purity and innocence. Red Asters are for undying devotion and pink ones mean love and emotions.
Asters are related to Sunflowers. They both come from the same family. Just like the sunflowers, Asters are also had high resistance to drought and severe high temperature. The plant is identified through its coarse-growing stem with a slight woody base. The dark green leaves are long and pointed. Its thin leaves come in alternated toothed and un-toothed and most of them are loved. This type of flower is mostly perennials but some species are annuals and biennials.
It blooms late summer or early fall and its fragrant colorful flowers became the target of bees, butterflies and birds in the summer days. Some species of larvae and Lepidoptera use this flower as part of their food system.
Asters come in a wide array of colors and hues. Some are in pink and purple shades and some are in lighter colors. You may also find the flower in yellow, blue, orange, and red. The most common varieties of Asters are Lindley’s Aster, New England Aster, Many-Flowered Aster, Western silvery Aster, Willow Aster, Flat-Topped White Aster, and Smooth Aster.
Being one of the wildflowers, they depend much on birds and insects for pollination. Bees, birds, and butterflies usually take its pollen from one place to another or from one plant to another. On the other hand, the seed can also be planted and grown at home. The best time to plant one is in the middle of the spring season or later. It may require extra effort to plant Asters. Some growers even put the seeds in the refrigerator for a month or two for winter dormancy stimulation.
To plant the seeds, you will need well-drained soil but moist and loamy. It should be in a location where it can get partial to full sunlight. When seeds are planted, the plant should be given plenty of water while growing. But once it becomes stable, it can stand even the hottest summer days. To keep the soil protected from winter snow and from weeds, you can add mulch on the soil.
Asters can be planted in pots and grown indoors. In order for the plant to produce fuller, pinch or trim the plant once it reaches 10 to 12 inches high. During the growing season, you can pinch it up to 3 times. Remember that this plant needs partial to full sun exposure. It will be more prone to mildew if the area where it is placed has poor circulation and less sun exposure.
Planting and growing Asters in your garden enhance the landscape and add beauty to your home. The flowers attract butterflies but they are very efficient in deterring insects. If you want to add accent to your gardens, it is best to plant Asters in succession. This way you can expect ongoing blooms even after its season.
Whether you grow your Asters from seeds or you chose to buy potted plants, growing it at home can be a simple garden chore that can add appeal to your landscape. It can also be rewarding as you see beautiful blooms being visited by colorful butterflies during the summer and spring seasons. It also does not require thorough maintenance because mature plants are strong enough to endure the hot season. In case powdery mildew appears, you can easily control the problem by using soap mixture or insecticides. Proper care is sure to bring you colorful Asters each year