Bedding plants

Carpet aster 'Snowflurry' - plant, maintain and cut

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The carpet aster is a vigorously flowering and very popular perennial plant. In addition, it is easy to care for and quite undemanding.

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The carpet aster 'Snowflurry' (Aster pansus 'Snowflurry') is a pretty herbaceous plant with its characteristic flowers reminiscent of small snowflakes - even in autumn. The English term snowflake is derived from this look. This aster species is also the only one of the asters that is characterized by a ground-covering growth. Again and again, new shoots of the carpet aster form, which ensure that the plant spreads like a fan. Over time, a dense stand that resembles a carpet forms, which also explains this name of the plant.

Even if the white plant is not native to this country, it does very well in a rock garden. However, the carpet aster only blooms in September and October, whereby it hardly exceeds a stature height of ten to 25 centimeters. Due to the fact that the carpet aster does not bloom before September, it is also known as September herb. The perennial plant is also popularly known as autumn aster. Nevertheless, this aster variety has not yet been particularly widespread in this country.

The charming look of the carpet aster

The carpet aster has countless star blossoms of a fine-radiating nature. Especially in autumn, the dense bloom is a real feast for the senses. The cute white cup flowers are characterized by a yellow center and tiny size. In comparison to the linear leaves in a dark, rich green, the flowers of the carpet aster form a successful contrast. At the top, the stems of the plant are quite branched. Carpet asters are particularly effective in the garden if they are planted as follows:

  • growing down on walls
  • hanging on landing
  • in stone beds
  • as a container plant
  • in troughs or boxes as an ornamental plant

or:

  • on a bee pasture
  • on a butterfly willow
  • on an insect pasture

In addition, the carpet aster gets along very well with many planting partners, which can also come from the aster family, for example. Therefore, the carpet aster can be combined in your own garden as follows for a colorful color spectacle:

  • with high varieties of aster that bloom bright blue
  • with feather grass
  • with purple verbena
  • with Indian grass
  • together with the bluish spurge
  • with the big fat leaf

Basic information on the plant genus of asters

As a soil-creeping plant, the carpet aster is a real exception in the family of asters. Nevertheless, it also has many properties in common with other aster species. This genus of plants belongs to the daisy family, of which around 180 different species are known around the world. Asters are particularly common in Eurasia. Many species of asters are used as ornamental plants in gardens and parks.

Most of the asters, like the carpet asters, are perennial. However, there are also one and two year plants of this genus. The plants differ greatly in terms of their growth heights. These can amount to just three centimeters up to three meters. A variation from toothed to smooth can also be observed in the leaf margins. The following color spectrum is covered by this plant family:

  • White
  • pink
  • blue
  • purple
  • red

The genus as such was documented as early as 1753. This goes on the cap of Carl von Linné. The generic name "Aster" is derived from the Latin "astrum", which means something like star or star and thus indicates the flower shape of most asters. Each aster variety is also known under its own Latin name, which for the carpet or snow flurry aster is, for example, "Aster pansus".

The carpet aster prefers these locations

The carpet aster can be planted on stone and open spaces as well as on the edge of the wood. In addition to being in full sun, the Aster is above all very important a dry, but sufficiently permeable and nutrient-poor soil. The Snowflurry Aster thrives very well in open spaces, even on moderately dry to fresh soil. At the edge of the wood, a sunny and sufficiently warm location is very important. If the carpet aster has a sufficiently strong root ball that has dug deep enough into the ground, it can thrive even in a partially shaded spot.

Plant the carpet aster in your own garden

If you want to plant the carpet aster in your own garden, you should keep a planting distance of over 40 centimeters. The ideal planting period extends from March to October, so that the small snowflake plants can be planted in your own garden for most of the year without any problems. The carpet aster is best planted in a group consisting of three to five individual plants.

Tips for successfully creating a herbaceous border

If the carpet aster is to be successfully integrated into a perennial bed in your own garden, all hobby gardeners should definitely take a few important expert tips to heart. After the plants have been unpacked, it makes sense to put them in a water bath for ten minutes. The root ball of the carpet aster should be sufficiently saturated with water so that the plant can grow as well as possible. This can be seen from the fact that at some point no further air bubbles will rise in the water bath, which can be seen as a clear indication of a fully soaked root ball.

If a large bed is to be created, it makes sense to place the individual plants in their pots at the correct distance along the bed. In this way, the required planting distance can be correctly determined over the entire area. Any corrections to the distances between the carpet aster and the other plants are also much easier. Not only the carpet aster, but also all other plants are best placed in a perennial border as a group of three or five. This ensures a particularly beautiful appearance.

Carpet asters and other plants should be carefully removed from their pots without damaging the roots when removing the plastic pot. Therefore, under no circumstances should the shoots of the plants be pulled. Rather, the pot should be placed gently on its head so that the carpet asters and other plants can be removed particularly easily. Of course, these should be caught as gently as possible with the free hand. Now the plants can be placed in a sufficiently large planting hole. Then it is important to water the carpet asters and other plants weather-orientated in the evening or in the morning, in order to make growing them noticeably easier.

Carefully care for the carpet aster and cut back

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A cut back in the spring is recommended to maintain the carpet aster. This should definitely be carried out close to the ground and only when the main bloom has already taken place. Even if the carpet aster cannot be carried away to a second bloom, the pruning helps to ensure that the plant can be healthy, splendidly new. Since the carpet aster tends to sow itself, this can also be kept under control by cutting back.

The water requirement of the plant can also be described as rather low, which is why this aster variety is so well suited for rock gardens. The carpet aster therefore only needs to be watered very rarely, and only in really dry weather conditions that have been going on for a long time. If irrigation of the carpet aster is necessary, this can be easily recognized by the slack leaves of the plant.

Even if the carpet aster should only be watered rarely, a thorough watering that penetrates the plant completely is recommended if necessary. Under full sun the perennial plant should under no circumstances be watered. Rather, the plant gets better if it is watered in the early morning or in the evening when the sun has already set.

Anyone who regularly divides the plant every two to three years has the opportunity to easily remove all weak shoots and roots. This contributes to the better vigor of the carpet aster, which also results in a more radiant flower power. This targeted step stimulates the roots of the plant to spread into the deeper layers of the earth. This in turn helps the Carpet Aster to better compensate for possible dry periods on its own.

Fertilize carpet aster

A perennial fertilizer, which is known for its long-lasting effect, is ideal for re-fertilizing the plant. This is available from specialist retailers, with a fertilizer to be used in a concentration of 40 to 50 grams per square meter being the ideal choice. After all, the carpet aster should only be fertilized once a year, and preferably in spring. In this way, flower growth can be promoted in the fall. Not only organic but also mineral fertilizers can be used to fertilize the carpet aster if required.

Carefully overwinter carpet aster

The carpet aster is a hardy variety. Accordingly, no special winter protection is required so that the carpet aster can shine in its full shine again in the coming autumn. The perennial and fairly easy-care plant can give all hobby gardeners a lot of fun for a long time - and without any great effort on their part. After all, the carpet aster can be regarded as absolutely frost-resistant even at temperatures down to minus 23 degrees Celsius.

Detect and combat pests on the carpet aster

The so-called aster wilt is a problem that can affect almost all asters. This also applies to the carpet aster. This disease causes the foliage of the plant to turn brown. If there is an infestation, the asters unfortunately have to be planted out of the garden bed so that the wilt does not spread to other plants.

If the weather turns out to be appropriate, an infestation with mildew is also possible, for which carpet asters are quite susceptible. However, you can provide it with a special tea made from the field horsetail. The carpet aster should be sprayed with it so that the mildew does not stand a chance. After all, this tea contains enough silica so that the damaged fungus cannot settle on the carpet aster. In addition, most gardening retailers offer special fungicides that are suitable for the fight against mildew.

As already mentioned, all hobby gardeners can also contribute to the permanent health of their carpet asters by taking another measure. It makes sense to do this if the root ball is repeatedly divided over the life of the plant over several years and replanted at a different location. This strengthens the roots and therefore the resistance of the carpet aster enormously.

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