Eurybia divaricata

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Plant types and subtypes: Perennials

Light Requirements: part-sun, part-shade, shade

Water Use: low

Soil Moisture: dry, moist

Soil Description: acid, neutral, rich, clay

Height: 1'-3'

Bloom Time: August, September, October

Bloom Color: white

Leaf Color: green

Hardiness Zone: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Additional Tags: attracts bees, attracts butterflies, clumping, deer resistant, naturalizing, shade garden plant, woodland plant

Eurybia divaricata (white wood aster)
  • Eurybia divaricata (white wood aster)
  • Eurybia divaricata (white wood aster)
  • Eurybia divaricata (white wood aster)
  • Eurybia divaricata (white wood aster)

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Description

Eurybia divaricata

Also known as:

white wood aster

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Scientific Synonyms:

Aster boykinii, Aster carmesinus, Aster castaneus, Aster claytonii, Aster divaricatus, Aster excavatus, Aster flexilis, Aster stilettiformis, Aster tenebrosus

Description

Eurybia divaricata is a shade-loving aster. It produces large quantities of flowers with white rays and yellow central disks, that seem to float above the contrasting deep-green foliage. Although the individual flowers are delicate and only 1" across, it blooms in large, showy terminal clusters. The leaves are spade-like, coarsely serrated. The stems tend to zigzag, and can range in color from dark green to almost black, offering yet another contrasting element to the plant. As the flowers mature, their central disk goes from yellow, to red and bronze, before going to seed.

Cultivation

White wood asters are one of the earliest fall-bloomers, and about as close as you can get to the ideal wildflowers for dry shade. If anything, some people find it can do too well, and take over. It performs best under filtered light, with up to 3 hours of direct sun a day. The soil should be well-drained, and slightly acidic. Heavy soil that remains consistently moist, can lead to foliar disease, especially if combined with poor air circulation. The seeds are easily dispersed by the wind, and this species can spread aggressively in ares that are disturbed or sparsely planted. However, dead-heading will keep this species in check, unwanted plants can be easily removed. The blooming period occurs from late summer to mid-fall, and lasts for up to 2 months. Zones 4-8

Propagation

The seeds are easily dispersed by the wind, and can be difficult to collect. Easy to propagate by division in spring.

Additional Notes

Cutting the plants back to 6" late in spring will produce a denser form. Combines beautifully with low ground covers such as Asarum canadense, and with ferns such as Osmunda cinnamosa.

Native Range & Classification

Recorded County Distribution: USDA data

Native Range:
AL, CT, DC, DE, GA, KY, MA, MD, ME, MS, NC, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, SC, TN, VA, VT, WV

Classification

Kingdom Plantae Plants
Subkingdom Tracheobionta Vascular plants
Superdivision Spermatophyta Seed plants
Division Magnoliophyta Flowering plants
Class Magnoliopsida Dicotyledons
Subclass Asteridae
Order Asterales
Family Asteraceae Aster family
Genus Eurybia aster
Species Eurybia divaricata white wood aster