New York aster, also known as Michaelmas daisy, is a robust, upright native perennial with gray-green leaves and dense crown of fall-blooming, purple daisy-like flowers. A great addition to the late season perennial garden when combined with goldenrod and other native grasses.
This plant has some cultivated varieties. Go to list of cultivars.
All Common Names:
Tree or Plant Type:
- Chicago area,
- North America
- Mixed border,
- Large plant (more than 24 inches),
- Medium plant (12-24 inches)
- Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily),
- Partial sun/shade (4-6 hrs light daily)
- Zone 4,
- Zone 5 (Chicago),
- Zone 6,
- Zone 7,
- Zone 8
- Moist, well-drained soil
- Wet sites,
- Occasional flooding,
- Road salt
Season of Interest:
- Late summer,
- Early fall,
- Mid fall
Flower Color & Fragrance:
Shape or Form:
Upright, 3 to 5 feet high and wide, with shorter cultivars available.
Full sun to part shade in moist, well-drained soil.
Tall forms can be pinched back before July to promote compact habit.
Divide older plants in spring by lifting plants any replanting the vigorous side growth, discarding older center stems.
Taller plants may need staking.
Allow good air circulation between plants for to avoid fungal diseases.
Disease, pests, and problems
Powdery mildew, rust, lacebug
Wet soil will lead to root rot.
Disease, pest, and problem resistance
Native geographic location and habitat
Throughout north America in moist, wet meadows, wood edges and coastal habitat.
Attracts birds, pollinators, or wildlife
Butterflies, bees and other pollinators
Alternate, simple, lancolate to broadly linear, 3 to 5 inches long, sessile or clasping to thin stem.
Upper leaf surface stiff with pubescence underside, margins are slightly toothed.
Large panicles of showy, daisy-like, violet-blue flowers with a central ring of yellow florets.
Flowers bloom in late summer into fall. Cultivars vary in color
Seed with tuft of hairs to aid in wind dispersal.
Cultivars and their differences
Blue Lagoon New York Aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Blue Lagoon'): 20 to 24 inches and wide; low bushy habit; clear blue daisy-like flowers
Coombe Violet New York Aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Coombe Violet'): Upright, bushy, 3 to 4 feet high and 2 to 3 feet wide; violet-purple flowers with gray-green leaves
Henry III New York Aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Henry III'): Flowers are double.
Peter Harrison New York Aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Peter Harrison'): low bushy, 1 to 11/2 feet high and wide; pink flowers
Professor Anton Kippenberg New York Aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Professor Anton Kippenberg'): compact habit, 1 to 2 feet high; semi-double, lavender-blue flowers
Raspberry Swirl New York Aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Raspberry Swirl'): 18 to 24 inches high and wide; magenta-red flowers
Royal Ruby New York Aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Royal Ruby'): 20 to 30 inches high; semi-double red flowers