aromatic aster ‘October Skies’

Aromatic aster ‘October Skies’ (Symphyotrichum oblongifolium ‘October Skies‘). Some may know that plant taxonomists have segregated the large Asteraceae family into new and different genera. As a result, Aster oblongifoliusOctober Skies‘ is most accurately now recognized as Symphyotrichum oblongifoliumOctober Skies‘.

A. ‘October Skies‘ grows up to 2 ft. tall and 2 ft. wide, and has a low-, shrub-like growth habit that makes the selection a terrific option for mass planting impact. Plants flower from September/October through to the first hard frost, producing dark sky blue daisy-like flowers with yellow centers up to 1.5 in. in diameter. Leaves of this aster are fragrant when crushed.

Flowers attract native bees, honeybees, and bumble bees, serving as a good source of bee forage late into the fall/early winter season. The species, Symphyotrichum oblongifolium, is native to North America east of the Rocky Mountains. ‘October Skies‘ is a lower-growing selection of ‘Raydon’s Favorite’, which itself is a selection of the species.

Botanical Name Symphyotrichum oblongifolium ‘October Skies’
Common Name aromatic aster ‘October Skies’
Family Asteraceae
USDA Zone 4 thru 8
Light Requirement Full Sun
Season(s) of interest summer, fall
Height and Spread 1.5-2ft x 1.5-2ft (45-60cm x 45-60cm)
Flower Color Blue, Purple
Attracts Wildlife Provides Food for Birds, Hosts Caterpillars of Butterflies/Moths, Attracts Pollinators, Rarely Browsed by Mammalian Herbivores
Additional Information Cultivated Form of a Native Plant.
Location in Lurie Garden North Dark Plate, Southwest Dark Plate, East Dark Plate​

Average Flowering Time