Aster lateriflorus ‘Prince’
(Syn. Symphyotrichum lateriflorum)
Clouds of very fine misty flowers are a treat in autumn.
Aster lateriflorus ‘Prince’ covers itself with a profusion of the finest rayed, tiniest white daisies, each with a raspberry centre.
It blooms so hard that you can’t fit a pin between the flowers and it turns itself into an autumn haze.
So ‘Prince’ is perfect for smaller gardens, as it is compact, hardy, and a powerhouse of flowers and beautiful foliage.
(Scroll below to “Growing” section for plant details & cultivation advice).
Black foliage for contrast
Aster lateriflorus ‘Prince’ is stunning, both in and out of the flower.
As it has dark, almost black-plum, leaves and stems.
And this gorgeous foliage makes great colour contrast with all other plants, even when not in flower.
Of course the dark foliage looks wonderful amongst it’s own white and crimson Aster flowers.
Plant between roses
But the black foliage also looks sensational amongst dark red or white roses, even when the Aster is not in flower.
Cut branches of flowers
Aster lateriflorus ‘Prince’ provides great swags of commercial florist quality cut flowers, on branching stems. And they are exceptionally long lasting in the vase.
Growing: Aster lateriflorus ‘Prince’
– Height with flowers: Billowing 60cm. approx. when in flower. But shorter dark foliage before and after flowering.
– Width: Forms a dense clump of black-plum foliage to a diameter of 50-60cm. approx.
– Position: Full Sun is usual, although ‘Prince’ can tolerate a little shade, or some dappled shade, as long as it is dry and airy. But he does not appreciate dank humidity. However he will also tolerate shade for part of the day in hotter districts. As long as he is getting plenty of light and air.
Gorgeous but tough
– Water-wise: Aster lateriflorus ‘Prince’ is a water-wise plant, ideal for water conserving gardeners. Because it can withstand periods of dry between drinks, and is heat tolerant.
So it is not a thirsty plant. And normal, average garden watering is ample.
– Soil: ‘Prince’ is very unfussy about soil type. He happily thrives in just about any soil, from sandy, through gravel and rocky, to heavier loams. And from acid to alkaline lime pH.
The only thing he resents is poor drainage and being waterlogged.
– Frost: Extremely frost hardy, as it can survive even severe frosts down to below -20C.
Easy low care
– Care: ‘Prince’ is a very low maintenance, hardy and easy care plant.
The only work required is to shear the cloud of flower stems back to the ground after flowering. Your plant then clumps up with foliage again, ready to do an even more impressive billow of flowers again.
‘Prince’ is virtually pest and disease free if his simple requirements are met.
– Growth: Perennial clump, which is tall from mid-spring to after summer and autumn flowering. It is a low clump of foliage during winter, but does not completely disappear.
– Beneficial for wildlife: Bees become intoxicated in ‘Prince’, because the flowers are so rich in nectar and pollen. The fact that a huge mass of flowers comes just when many other flowers are flagging after the summer heat, is also a great bonus for our bees.
– Deer & Rabbit resistant: Yes. Fortunately the leaves are unpalatable to the nibbling pests. Although of course they will eat anything if they are starving. But generally speaking, they leave ‘Prince’ alone.
– Fragrance: None, but the wonderful cut flowers mean you can forgive.
– Origin: ‘Prince’ is a modern garden cultivar with enhanced performance. But it originated from the hardy Aster lateriflorus that can be found growing wild amongst the woods and prairies of central and eastern North America. So this native habitat accounts for the hardy, easy growing, tough constitution of these modern descendants from good old Aster lateriflorus.