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Naturally occurring in moist areas, New England Aster is one of the showiest of all the asters, it produces clusters of large flowers ranging in
colour from pink to deep purple, each with distinct yellow-orange centres, at the end of numerous branching stems. A late season nectar source
for a variety of butterflies, especially Monarchs as they stock up for their fall migration to Mexico, it is also the larval host for
the Pearl Crescent, the Gorgone Checkerspot butterfly and the Northern Flower moth. Symphyotrichum novae-angliae
prefers full sun in moist, rich soil but will grow in a variety of conditions.
Attracts Butterflies, Honeybees & Songbirds!
Makes Great Cut Flowers!
Cold, moist stratification. Start at least 5 weeks before outdoor night temperatures are reliably in the 10 C (50 F) range. Mix the seed with a slightly moistened,
sterile, soil-less growing mix. Put this in a labelled, sealed plastic bag and store in a refrigerator for one day. The next day place this in the freezer for one day.
Repeat this for one week, alternating between the fridge and the freezer. After stratifying, plant seed 0.32 cm (1/8 inch) deep in pots. Keep moist but not soggy and
very warm (21 C - 70 F). When seedlings are 5 cm (2 inches) tall or more, transplant into the garden spaced 30 cm (1 foot) apart.
Plant seed 0.32 cm (1/8 inch) deep in a prepared seed bed in late fall so that the seed overwinters and germinates naturally in spring.
In late fall through to mid-winter fill plastic pots with a slightly moistened, sterile, soil-less growing mix. Plant seed 0.32 cm (1/8 inch) deep in pots and label
the pots. Place them outdoors in an area where they will experience the snow and cold of winter. The seed will germinate in the pots in spring as the weather warms up.
Be sure to water the pots regularly in spring and once the plants are 5 cm (2 inches) tall, transplant them into your garden.