Aster laevis Bluebird
Bluebird Smooth Aster
DetailsBluebird Smooth Aster (Aster laevis 'Bluebird') is one of the very best of our native Asters, providing a profusion of 1-inch violet-blue flowers held in clusters at the tips of the growing stems. Attractive blue-green foliage provides garden interest prior to the showy flowers. 'Bluebird' was introduced by Dr. Richard Lightly of the Mt. Cuba Center botanical gardens where it was rated as the #1 performing Aster in their garden evaluation of the genus. Asters should be a mainstay of the late summer and fall garden—they’re easy-to-grow and invaluable nectar sources for all types of native bees and butterflies, including migrating Monarchs. Growing readily in a wide range of soil types including clay, Bluebird Smooth Aster is a care-free perennial that should be planted in every garden.
|Common Name||Bluebird Smooth Aster|
|Botanical Name||Aster laevis 'Bluebird'|
|Zones||4, 5, 6, 7, 8|
|Light Requirements||Full Sun, Morning Sun & Afternoon Shade|
|Mature Height||36-48" tall|
|Mature Spread||24-36" wide|
|Bloom Time||Late summer to late fall|
|Ships As||Potted Plant|
|Planting Time||Spring / Summer, Fall|
|Soil Type||Sandy Soil, Average Soil|
|Soil Moisture||Average, Drought Resistant / Waterwise|
|Amount of Rain||10 to 20", 20 to 30", 30 to 40", 40 to 50"|
|Advantages||Deer Resistant, Attract Butterflies, Easy to grow, Good for Cut Flowers, Native, Extended Bloom Time (more than 4 weeks), Good for Erosion Control, Low Maintenance, Great for Mass Plantings|
|Ideal Region||Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, Southwest, West, Pacific Northwest|
|Neonicotinoid-Free||Yes - Learn More|
|Ships to Hawaii, Alaska & Canada||No|
These are late summer/fall blooming native wildflowers that are easy-to-grow and provide an ample late season nectar supply for butterflies and bees. As such, they are an indispensible perennial for late season color and for feeding migrating Monarchs. Asters are resistant to browsing rabbits.
Preferred growing conditions:
- They grow well in most any type of soil including clay.
- Mulch with common mulching materials as well as gravel when planted in a xeriscape.
- Most do well with regular irrigation to keep the soil moderately moist. Some species are more xeric.
- Plant in full sun or part sun. Some varieties will stretch in too much shade
- Just a few handfuls of compost and Yum Yum Mix in the planting hole is enough. Don't plant into a rich, highly amended soil. Special comments:
- Species that spread to form wide growing clumps can be divided in mid-spring. Garden Care:
- Fertilize in the fall with Yum Yum Mix and good quality compost.
- Deadheading is not necessary, but will reduce re-seeding of seed-grown varieties.
- Leave standing over the winter months and cut back hard to 1 to 2" above the ground.
- If foliage becomes affected with mildew at the end of the growing season, cut back to the ground and remove the leaves/stems to the compost pile or trash.
View more Planting Guides, or download our complete Planting Guide for tips on caring for your plants when you receive your order, as well as planting instructions for Perennials, Spring-Planted Bulbs, Fall-Planted Bulbs, Cacti & Succulents, Xeric Plants and more.
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Q & A
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USDA Hardiness Planting Zones
To determine if a plant is sufficiently cold hardy, the USDA created numbered zones indicating winter low temperatures; the lower the zone number the colder the winter.
- If the coldest winter temperature expected in your area is -15°F (zone 5) then any plants rated zones 3-5 will survive the winter temperatures in your area.
- If you live in very warm winter areas (zones 9-11) plants with zones 3-4 ratings are not recommended. The lack of freezing winter temperatures do not provide a time for winter dormancy (rest).
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