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New England Aster

Scientific name: Symphyotrichum novae-angliae

This perennial native is a member of the aster family. They all have a “Star”  like appearance with a central disk and small radiating flowers (known as composite flowers). New England asters grow taller than New York asters and achieve a height of 4 to 6 feet.


Rough, hairy, green lance-shaped leaves (up to 4 inches long) on stiff hairy stems.


Features a profuse bloom of daisy like asters (to 1 1/2 inches in diameter) with purple rays and yellow centers from late summer to early fall.

Blooming Season

Late summer to early fall.

Fun Facts

Common name of Michaelmas daisy honoring St. Michael’s day (September 29) which falls during the time this aster is in bloom.

In Autumn

Asters and goldenrods are our beautiful native fall wildflowers. Late in the season when other flowers have faded, these important plants continue to support wildlife with their rich nectar. Later in winter their seeds are a good food source for birds as well.


The New England Aster can be found in locations with full sun and well drained soil, although it does like moisture. It can get stressed in times of heat or drought.

You might see this plant flowering in fall at the meadow at Old Field Preserve.

Similar Species

It is quite similar to the New York Aster. You can read more about the differences here.

Ecosystem Connections

  • Flowers are attractive to butterflies and bees.
  • A good late season source of nectar.

Human Connections

This plant is edible. Learn more.

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