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Silky (A. sericeus)- Symphyotrichum sericeum (Vent.) Nesom – a perennial




Aster sericeus that belongs to Asteraceae family is a perennial and is also known as silky aster, Western silver American-aster and Western silver aster. It can grow up to one to two feet in height. It has Blue-violet, solitary flowers with yellow centers that are also found in Pink to Purple colors. The flowers bloom from September to October. It has small, pointed leave that are gray-green in color. It has zigzag and wiry stems. Typical silky hairs cover the leaves. It forms clumps to self-seed once established. This plant attracts bees and butterflies, its larval host Pearl Crescent and syrphid flies. Among the bees, Green Metallic bees are most and herbivores eat this plant readily, especially rabbits and groundhogs. It sprawls along the ground. The leaf arrangement is different as the alternate leaves are silvery green. The leaves are ½” long and ½” wide, lanceolate or ovate, and sessile with silvery appearance when young and brown when old. The foliage is silvery and silky.
The flowers are 11/4 inches across and are daisy-like. The flower has florets which are12-25 in number. The flowers have no scent. This plant has fibrous roots and has vegetative offsets. Habitats include dry gravel prairies, dolomite prairies, sand prairies, hill prairies, scrubby barrens, limestone glades, and prairie remnants along railroads. It is used as a wildflower in rock gardens, landscaping and Prairie restoration and as an ornamental plant.

Growing Conditions of Silky Aster

• This plant requires Full sun to partial shade.
• The soil pH should be acidic that is less than 6.8.
• It likes dry soils to moderate moisture.
• The soil can be rocky or sandy.
• The plant is propagated by seed.
• Sow the seed in fall or spring.
• Stratify the seeds for ten weeks at 40 degrees.
• Plant the seedlings.
• Space the plants to 18 to 24 inches.
• The hairs of the plants can spread through winds.

Caring of Silky Aster

• This plant requires Full sun to partial shade.
• It likes dry soils to moderate moisture.
• The soil can be rocky or sandy.
• The soil pH should be acidic that is less than 6.8.
• Asters are resistant to insects and disease.
• Treat early with organic or chemical insect repellents and fungicide.
• Avoid insect or disease problems occur.
• Choose a different spot each year to avoid the risk of Aster Wilt disease.
• Avoid overwatering the plant as this can cause rotting of the plant.
• Be careful of the spread of hairs around, as some can be allergenic to it.





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