Many-flowered AsterSymphyotrichum ericoides (L.) Nesom
This prairie perennial blooms late in the year, and sometimes has a bushy heath-like appearance. Plants often form colonies by spreading from underground rhizomes, and are adapted to many types of soil including those in disturbed areas. Flowers have no noticeable scent and attract butterflies, moths, skippers, bees, flies, and beetles. Plants are also fed on by animals such deer, rabbits, livestock, and butterfly/moth larvae. Cultivars of this species have become popular garden plants.
Canadian Rarity Status:
Not rare. Listed as “exotic” in Quebec.
The hairy stems grow 20-100 cm tall, and are sometimes branching. Leaves are alternate and linear, with smooth edges and fine hairs. Lower leaves usually senesce before flowering. Flowering stems have numerous needle-like bracts, and many flower heads along one side and towards the ends. Each head consists of 5-25 yellow disc florets surrounded by 8-20 white ray florets, backed by 3-5 whorls of narrow bracts. Fruits are ribbed, single-seeded achenes, topped by tufts of white hair-like bristles.
Western Willow Aster (Symphyotrichum lanceolatum (Willd.) Nesom), White Prairie Aster (Symphyotrichum falcatum (Lindl.)), White Upland Aster
Seeds and/or plants are often available from greenhouses and seed supply companies specializing in native plants. Plants are a good addition to butterfly gardens, and provides colour late in the year.
- British Columbia
- Northwest Territories
- Fescue Prairie
- Mixed Grass Prairie
- Tall Grass Prairie
- Forest Edges
- Rocky Slopes
- Full Sun
- Andrenid Bees, Miner/Digger Bees (Andrenidae)
- Bee Flies (Bombyliidae)
- Bumble, Honey, and other Bees (Apidae (Subfamily Apinae))
- Flesh Flies (Sarcophagidae)
- Flower Flies (Syrphidae)
- Leaf Beetles (Chrysomelidae)
- Leafcutter and Mason Bees (Megachilidae)
- Muscid Flies (Muscidae)
- Parasitic Flies (Tachinidae)
- Soldier Beetles (Cantharidae)
- Sweat Bees, Halictid Bees and other Bees (Halictidae)
- Whites, Sulfurs, Orangtips, Marbles (Pieridae)
- Yellow-faced Bees (Colletidae)
- Yellowjacket, Potter, and other Wasps (Vespidae)