Tuesday, September 25, 2007

New York Aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii)

New York Aster
Symphyotrichum novi-belgii
(sim-fy-oh-TRY-kum) (NO-vee BEL-jee-eye)

I saw this Aster at the Vanderbilt Mansion in Hyde Park. It was marked ‘Professor Kippenburg’, however, after a little research I found out that is a blue cultivar and not a deep pink one. So I don’t know the name of this one but it was a colorful little plant that was full of bees. If you ever want to take a couple of photographs of bees just hang around some Asters for a few seconds.

I will always have a sweet spot for Asters. They come on strong in a time of year when just about everything else looks tired. They are easy to grow with the key cultivation factor of watching for Powdery Mildew and other fungus during the year. Good air circulation is a must. I usually pinch all my Asters a couple of times during the season, even the dwarf ones. That allows for a bushy and compact plant, which beats a floppy, stringy plant any day. Asters in general are reliable blasts of color right when you need them. They can tolerate almost wet soil and also grow well in dry soil. They are quite hardy and can take some light frost. Division is an easy way to get new plants and keep the existing clumps healthy. One thing I found out is they are considered a good cut flower.

Symphyotrichum seems to be the ‘new’ genus name for Aster. There are also quite a few botanical synonyms.

My first experiment with the Blogger time stamp was a miserable failure when the post published right away. Sorry about that. For those of you that tuned in to see my Wordless Wednesday post you will have to come back tonight to see it.

This is a weird abstract photo of the Aster. It was a little bit of an accident. I would like to take some more pictures like this that were just a little but clearer. That is something to work on.


Mark said...

Hi Chris,
Have you saeen my last post , you would have loads a lovely images for it.
What is the blogger time stamp, isthis when you can publish a picture and time it to appear at a certain time?
If it is i would find that useful, how do you do it?

Cheers Mark

Anonymous said...

These are lovely images, the colour is gorgeous! Happy WW :)

Digital Flower Pictures said...

Hi Mark,
I'll check out your post. The time stamp is suppose to publish when you want it. It is at the bottom of the compose window (I'm using a Mac w/Firefox) and says 'Post Options', if you click that it turns into a little menu and the time stamp is there.

mitzh said...

Wow! they are absolutely gorgeous!

Hootin' Anni said...

Stunning photography

Anonymous said...

The abstract one is a happy accident, isn't it? Purple and yellow, beautifully captured.

The Vanderbilt Mansion on the Hudson has some wonderful big, shapely old trees.

Digital Flower Pictures said...

chewy, I was blown away by the trees at the Vanderbilt shack :lol: The gardens were nice but not as extensive as I would have thought.