Aster: a shining star
Asters, with their star shaped florets are happy flowers. The delicate flowers are wonderful in natural looking bouquets.
A sunshine yellow centre surrounded by a circle of white, pink or purple petals – the Aster is a flower drawn by a child. The cheerful florets appear in huge numbers on the branching stems. They are lovely in natural looking bouquets but there is more to them than that. For example, try arranging a couple of bunches of Asters in an enamelled jug or a tin pail to achieve a country effect! Asters are less suited for use in bridal flowers or corsages as they need a great deal of water.
The Aster is a member of the Compositae or Asteraceae family. Aster is Greek for star and refers to the star shaped flowers. Aster is also a girls name, so do not be surprised if you hear the name being called sometime.
There are many varieties of Asters and they are native to America, Asia and Europe. Most of the varieties that are cultivated for cutting come in shades of purple (from fresh lilac to deep purple) and sparkling white, although there are also some delightful pink Asters. The
Aster is the symbol of love and autumn joy. By combining the two a bouquet of Asters is a delightful way of expressing love and happiness in the autumn years of life.
Many people associate the Aster with late summer, when the plants flower in many a garden. However, the cut flower is available all year round. The following tips for care apply to Asters: slant cut the stems using a sharp knife, remove all lower leaves so that none can hang in the vase water and stand the flowers in a clean vase filled with fresh water and perhaps a little cut flower food. Cut flower food can cause the leaves of Asters to turn yellow and it is better to avoid it if the flowers are not being used in a mixed bouquet. Advise your clients to keep an eye on the water level in the vase because Aster is a heavy drinker!