New York Aster Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard'
The 'Marie Ballard' is a cultivar known for its ornamental value, with a display of striking flowers. This plant showcases an abundance of daisy-like blooms, characterized by their vibrant lavender-blue petals that encircle prominent yellow centers. These flowers are eye-catching and give the plant a fluffy, cloud-like appearance when in full bloom. The petals are slender and numerous, radiating around the center disk in a classic aster form which adds to its charm. The foliage of the 'Marie Ballard' is also noteworthy with its lush, green leaves that provide a pleasing contrast to the purple tones of the flowers. These leaves have a slightly rough texture and are typically lance-shaped, attaching directly to the sturdy, branching stems which give the plant robust structural support. The overall form of the 'Marie Ballard' is dense and mounded, making it an attractive addition to garden beds and borders, where its blooms can be appreciated from late summer to fall. The plant exudes a charming cottage garden feel and is frequently visited by pollinators like bees and butterflies, adding dynamism to its display.
About this plant
New York Aster, Michaelmas Daisy
Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard'
New York aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard') is generally considered non-toxic to humans, and there are no commonly recognized symptoms of poisoning from this plant. It is important, however, for individuals to avoid consuming any plant material unless it is known to be safe, as individual allergic reactions or sensitivities can occur.
New York aster (Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard') is not known to be toxic to pets. There are no typical symptoms associated with poisoning from this plant in pets. However, as with any non-food plant, ingestion of large amounts can potentially cause gastrointestinal upset, such as vomiting or diarrhea, due to the plant material’s irritant properties, rather than any specific toxicity.
Color of leaves
3 feet (91 cm)
2 feet (61 cm)
- General Benefits
- Aesthetic Appeal: Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard', commonly known as New York asters, produces lush, double lavender-blue flowers that enhance the beauty of gardens and landscapes.
- Attracts Pollinators: These plants are known to attract butterflies, bees, and other beneficial insects which play a crucial role in pollination.
- Extended Blooming Season: New York asters have a long flowering period from late summer to fall, bringing color to the garden when many other plants have finished blooming.
- Easy to Grow: They are generally easy to cultivate and can thrive in a variety of soil conditions with minimal care.
- Drought Tolerant: Once established, these asters are relatively drought-tolerant, making them suitable for dry or xeriscape gardens.
- Winter Interest: After flowering, the seed heads of New York asters can provide visual interest during the winter months and can also offer food for birds.
- Dividing and Propagation: New York asters can be easily divided to produce new plants or spread to other areas of the garden.
- Versatility: These plants can be used in various garden settings such as borders, rock gardens, and cottage gardens.
- Medical Properties
- This plant is not used for medical purposes.
- Air-purifying Qualities
This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.
- Other Uses
- Floral Arrangements: Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard', also known as New York aster, is commonly used in cut flower arrangements for its vibrant blooms and can last a week or more in a vase if properly cared for.
- Natural Dye: The flowers of the New York aster can be used to produce a natural dye for fabrics or paper, yielding subtle shades of colors depending on the mordant used.
- Craft Projects: The dried flower heads of New York aster can be used in various craft projects, such as creating wreaths, potpourri, or decorative displays.
- Educational Tool: It can be utilized in educational settings like schools or nature programs to teach about plant life cycles and pollination as it is a late-season bloomer and attracts many pollinators.
- Photography: The New York aster provides a picturesque subject for photographers, especially in natural garden settings when they bloom in masses.
- Garden Borders: This plant can be used to create defined edges in garden design, as it forms dense clumps that can outline garden beds or pathways.
- Wildlife Habitat: While not directly a 'use', New York aster can significantly contribute to creating a habitat attractive to wildlife, including butterflies, bees, and other beneficial insects.
- Soil Erosion Control: Its dense growth habit can help stabilize soil in areas prone to erosion, though it's typically not the primary plant used for this purpose.
- Companion Planting: New York asters can be strategically placed in vegetable gardens or orchards to attract pollinators and consequently improve the yield of various crops.
- Mood Enhancer: Enjoyed in outdoor living spaces like patios or balconies, the lively colors of New York asters can help improve moods and create an enjoyable relaxation area.
- Feng Shui
The New York aster is not used in Feng Shui practice.
- Zodiac Sign Compitability
The New York aster is not used in astrology practice.
- Plant Symbolism
- Patience: Symphyotrichum novi-belgii, commonly known as New York aster, often blooms in late summer or early autumn, symbolizing the patience required to wait for rewards and the beauty of perfect timing.
- Elegance: The 'Marie Ballard' variety, with its double-lavender flowers, evokes elegance and a refined taste, appreciated for its ornamental beauty.
- Remembrance: Astors, coming from the Greek word for "star," are often associated with remembrance and the memory of loved ones, reflecting their use in tributes and memorials.
- Love: The New York aster is also connected to love, with its vibrant colors and autumn bloom time, it is seen as a symbol of enduring affection that lasts through the changing seasons.
- Daintiness: The delicate petals of the 'Marie Ballard' often represent daintiness and careful consideration, mirroring the subtle and tender aspects of nature.
New York aster 'Marie Ballard' prefers consistently moist soil, therefore it's important to establish a regular watering routine. During the growing season, water this perennial deeply once a week with about 1 to 2 gallons per plant, ensuring the soil is moist but not waterlogged. Adjust the amount of water according to weather conditions; less during periods of rain and more during dry spells. Over winter, reduce watering frequency as the plant enters dormancy and its water needs decrease.
New York aster 'Marie Ballard' thrives in full sun conditions, requiring at least 6 hours of direct sunlight daily to perform best. The ideal spot would be an open garden area or border that receives ample sunlight throughout the day. While the plant can tolerate partial shade, too much shade can result in poor blooming and leggy growth, so a sunnier spot is always preferred.
New York aster 'Marie Ballard' can withstand a range of temperature conditions and is hardy in USDA zones 4 through 8. It can survive minimum temperatures down to about -30 degrees Fahrenheit but performs best in environments where the temperature ranges between 60 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. To ensure optimal growth and flowering, protect the plant from extreme heat by providing afternoon shade if temperatures frequently rise above 85 degrees Fahrenheit.
Pruning New York aster 'Marie Ballard' is essential to maintain its shape, encourage denser growth, and promote more prolific blooming. It is best to prune in early spring by cutting back the previous year's growth to about 4 inches above ground level. Additionally, deadhead spent flowers regularly to prolong the blooming period. A more thorough pruning may be done after the first hard frost to prepare the plant for winter.
New York Aster 'Marie Ballard' thrives best in well-draining soil with a good amount of organic matter. A mix composed of loam, peat, and perlite or sand would provide an ideal growing medium. The soil pH should be slightly acidic to neutral, ideally ranging between 5.8 to 6.5.
New York Asters like 'Marie Ballard' generally do not require frequent repotting and can be done every 2-3 years. Ensure the pot size is increased slightly each time to accommodate root growth.
- Humidity & Misting
The New York Aster 'Marie Ballard' prefers moderate humidity levels but is quite adaptable and can tolerate a range of humidity conditions found in typical garden settings.
- Suitable locations
Provide bright light and consistent moisture.
Full sun, well-drained soil, regular watering.
- Life cycle
Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard', commonly known as New York Aster, begins its life when a seed germinates in spring, ideally in moist, well-drained soil with good sunlight. The seedling grows into a vegetative plant, developing a rosette of leaves on the ground before sending up vertical stems. As the plant matures throughout the summer, stems elongate and leaves grow along these stems. In late summer to fall, the New York Aster produces numerous lavender to pinkish flowers with yellow centers, attracting pollinators and setting seeds after pollination. After blooming, the plant enters a period of senescence; aerial parts die back with the onset of colder temperatures while the root system remains viable underground. The perennial rootstock survives the winter and initiates new growth the following spring, completing the cycle.
Early Spring to Mid-Summer
The Symphyotrichum novi-belgii 'Marie Ballard', commonly known as New York aster 'Marie Ballard', is most commonly propagated by division. This method entails carefully splitting the plant's root system into smaller sections, each with an adequate number of roots and shoots. The best time to divide New York asters is in the early spring or fall when the plant is not in its blooming phase, which reduces stress on the plant. Gardeners typically dig around the perimeter of the plant, lift it from the ground, and use a sharp knife or spade to cut the root ball into new divisions. Each division should then be promptly replanted in well-draining soil, given ample water to establish, and spaced at least 18 inches (approximately 45 centimeters) apart to allow for proper growth and air circulation. This method stimulates new growth and can help rejuvenate older clumps that have begun to die out in the center.