The Native Plant Store is Now Open Here

  • This page will remain accessible as a library page until I have all 200+ species profiles added to the new store software
  • Please see the Using the Plant Library  page  for some tips on how to make the most of the information here to select species for creating a healthy native plant community suited to the conditions of your site.

Symphyotrichum lateriflorum, Calico Aster

Symphyotrichum lateriflorum
Calico Aster

  • Full sun to shade
  • Average soil
  • 18” to 36” tall and wide
  • Late Summer and Fall Blooms
  • Ontario Native, Beginner Friendly, Thrives in Woodland and meadow ecosystems. Very popular with pollinators 

An Aster that I’m just beginning to get to know but am eager to introduce to some garden settings this year because they seem to be yet another late blooming, native species, that will thrive in shaded settings. 

While the plants in these photos are in a meadow setting, where they receive sun through the morning and are shaded in the afternoon, I’ve seen them growing in a nearby settings that received very little direct sun, so I suspect that they will thrive in my part shade, urban backyard.

Their small blooms have white to pale pink petals around centers that vary from bright yellow to brilliant pink, changing from the first to the second as each flower ages.

Their foliage is also somewhat variable, often with green leaves arranged along green to burgundy stems, but those leaves sometimes develop a deep purple or burgundy shade as they begin blooming. This tendency is common enough that there is a popular cultivar of this species, selected for that burgundy foliage, called ‘Lady in Black’.

While tiny, their blooms are abundant, especially when they are growing in settings with more sunlight and nice rich soil, and are popular with bees, including bumblebees. 

Their height in the meadow was around 18”-24”, with a similar spread. In a garden setting they are more often described as growing to around 3’ in height and width and having a clump forming habit.

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Species that were not sown / aren't being sown for 2023 are marked with an * 
Species that are native to this continent, but not historically native to Ontario are marked with a ~ 
While it rarely comes up, I do reserve the right to limit plant quantities, mostly to help ensure that as many native plant gardens as possible become a reality