Aster ‘Coombe Fishacre’
A tough and useful plant that bursts with masses of fine lilac-pink blooms with yellow to purple centres.
So it is an unusual, eye catching flower that provides a fantastic Autumn show.
And this profusion of colour comes just as a lot of the other summer blooms are starting to fade. As much as the late long lasting blooms of Aster ‘Coombe Fishacre’ are enjoyable to us, it is also a very important source of food for bees and pollinating insects.
(Scroll down to “Growing” section for plant & growing details).
Cut branches of flowers
Aster ‘Coombe Fishacre’ provides great swags of commercial florist quality cut flowers, on branching stems. And they are exceptionally long lasting in the vase.
Perfect for smaller gardens
Aster ‘Coombe Fishacre’ has it all – especially if limited space allows you to have only the best.
Because it is compact and upright: packs a big punch of colour; has a hardy, tough constitution without needing much water; easy low care; as well as providing wonderful cut flowers.
All from one small plant.
Award of Garden Merit
So it is no surprise that ‘Coombe Fishacre’ has won the prestigious “Award of Garden Merit” from the Royal Horticultural Society. And won it for an outstanding combination of beauty, hardiness and all round garden usefulness.
Growing: Aster ‘Coombe Fishacre’
– Height with flowers: Upright 90cm. approx. when in flower. But shorter before and after flowering.
– Width: Forms a dense clump foliage to a diameter of 30-60cm. approx.
– Position: ‘Coombe Fishacre’ is amongst the most shade tolerant of all Asters. So it is perfectly content in either Full Sun or Partial Shade.
Unusually in the Aster family, ‘Coombe Fishacre’ can tolerate heavier clay soils, and periods of wet soil, as well as periods of dry.
And again unusually in the Aster family, ‘Coombe Fishacre’ can tolerate some salt.
So it is suitable for coastal gardens too.
Gorgeous but tough
– Water-wise: Aster ‘Coombe Fishacre’ is a water-wise plant, ideal for water conserving gardeners. Because it can withstand periods of dry between drinks, and is heat tolerant, as well as being able to tolerate periods of wet.
But it is not a thirsty plant. And normal, average garden watering is ample.
– Soil: ‘Coombe Fishacre’ is very unfussy about soil type. It will happily thrive in just about any soil, from sandy, through gravel and rocky, to heavier loams and even clay.
And cope with acid or alkaline lime pH.
– Frost: Extremely frost hardy, as it can survive even severe frosts down to below -20C.
Easy low care
– Care: ‘Coombe Fishacre’ 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 next time.
‘Coombe Fishacre’ is virtually pest and disease free, and is rarely troubled by anything.
– 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, 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 it alone.
– Fragrance: None, but the wonderful cut flowers mean you can forgive.
Where did that funny name come from?
– Origin: ‘Coombe Fishacre’ is a modern garden cultivar with enhanced performance. But it originated from a cross between two exceptionally hardy and disease resistant wild American Asters. So this native habitat accounts for the hardy, easy growing, tough constitution of ‘Coombe Fishacre’.
The very strange name of ‘Coombe Fishacre’ comes because it is named after the garden of plant breeder Archie Hind, who crated this beauty.
I have had the enormous pleasure of visiting this outsatnding garden, and I love the plant, despite the funny name.