- Latin name:
- Europe, Asia, North America.
The genus includes about 500 perennial, less frequently one - and two-year herbaceous species. Annual asters now belong to the genus Callistephus. Some of them are found in the conditions of natural growth.
The inflorescences of asters are similar to the inflorescences-baskets of daisies, usually with yellow median flowers surrounded by reed flowers ("petals") of various colors, depending on the species and variety: from white to yellow, pink, red, blue and intermediate shades of varying intensity with color transitions. The height of plants is very different - from 15 cm to 2 m, and the use mainly depends on it: for a stony garden, dwarf ones are suitable, for borders - low and medium, for cutting - high, etc. Perennial asters are also divided according to the flowering period: spring -, summer - and autumn-flowering.
Alpine Aster (Aster alpinus) is a loose shrub with a height of 30-40 cm, with thin shoots, which is rarely found in natural conditions. Inflorescences are very attractive, solitary, up to 4-5 cm in diameter. Lingual flowers are white, pinkish-lilac, mauve-red, tubular-bright orange.
Italian Aster (A. amellus), which grows up to 45-60 cm in height, is a widespread and beloved species. Inflorescences are collected in loose corymbs. Lingual flowers are purple, tubular-yellow; lingual flowers are also pink and purple-blue.
Aster ericoides - is an autumn - blooming species with white tongue-shaped flowers. The height of the Bush is 30-60 cm. The shoots are branched, and the flowering is plentiful. There are also pink, crimson and blue reed flowers.
New England or American Aster (A. novae-angliae) and novobelgian or virgin Aster (A. novi-belgii) bloom in September. The height of the first can be up to 1.5 m; the baskets are purplish-purple or pink 3-4 cm in diameter; the shoots at the base of the Bush are woody, branching only at the top. Numerous varieties of novobelgian Aster come in various heights; flowers - a rich range of colors: pink, red, white, blue, blue; inflorescences are collected in a panicle at the ends of shoots.
Tall varieties with large (5 cm or more) baskets, simple and double, are grown for cutting.
Asters are open-ground plants that are quite demanding on soil fertility. organic and mineral fertilizers should be applied; the soil should be light and permeable. Plants are planted in open ground at a distance of 30-60 cm from each other in autumn or spring, but only when they reach a certain size. Dwarf species and varieties are grown in pots.
During the dry season, regular and abundant watering is necessary, but stagnation of water should always be avoided.
Potted low asters are transplanted in the spring.
Specific asters are propagated only by seeds. Sowing is carried out in the spring-in containers or hotbeds-in the open air. Grown seedlings are transplanted into other containers, and later planted in the open ground. The ground should be well drained. In addition, they practice dividing bushes: spring - flowering-after flowering, autumn-in early spring. Some varieties are propagated by spring cuttings in greenhouses.
Asters are light - loving, and their best location is in the open sun, otherwise the plants will be short, frail and may not even bloom.
The main types that are used are generally hardy and cold-resistant.
Diseases and pests
Oidium causes white powdery mildew to appear on the leaves of plants. Treatment with sulfur or special preparations helps in this case. Tracheomycosis, which clogs the conducting vessels, manifests itself in blackening of the basal parts and roots. The disease leads to the death of the plant, which is usually destroyed to prevent further infection of healthy plants. Its appearance can be prevented by planting asters on loose, light soils that do not stagnate water. Among the pests of asters are aphids, scoops, as well as leaf nematodes, mites and snails. All of them are eliminated by treatment with appropriate medications.
Asters are bought in gardening centers and flower shops in late spring and early summer. Choose species and varieties that are immune to tracheomycosis.
|Appearance maintenance||remove withered leaves, baskets|
|Location||in the open sun|
|Temperature||optimal 15-25 °C|
|Flowering time||depending on the species: spring, summer, autumn|
|Height||from 15 cm to 1.5-2 m depending on the type|
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