Aster alpinus ‘Dark Beauty’
ASTER DARK BEAUTY
A profusion of deep violet-blue daisies, sit proudly above a dense green carpet of foliage on Aster alpinus ‘Dark Beauty’.
Plus these dark beauties are such beautifully simple flowers, with cheerful yellow button centres. Thus creating a dainty and joyful plant to be enjoyed year after year.
(Scroll down to “Growing” section for plant & growing details).
A gentle groundcover & a pretty edger
‘Dark Beauty’ is very neat, compact and low growing, and only gently spreading.
So it makes a perfect groundcover for small gardens.
And if you need a greater spread, then you can plant multiple plants to make a dense, wider carpet to the size you want.
Therefore Alpine Asters make a delightful front edge to a garden bed, groundcover under taller plants, as well as decorative pots. And they are cute little cut flowers for small posies and vases.
Easy to grow
Alpine Asters are firm favourites for low maintenance gardeners, because they thrive in rocky soil, shallow and poor soils, or gravel gardens. And these conditions mimic their native habitats.
But sadly they do not enjoy humid climates, and instead love an open, airy spot.
So plant Aster alpinus ‘Dark Beauty’ in Full Sun to Part Shade, where it is open to the breezes.
Tough & easy little groundcover
Aster alpinus ‘Dark Beauty’ is very frost hardy, to well below -10C.
Together with being able to withstand periods of dry and harsh light, because it is naturally a plant of rocky slopes.
And ‘Dark Beauty’ is not a particularly thirsty plant, though of course it will do better with regular water if water is available.
Plant under roses
Maintenance work is very low, with really nothing to do aside from an occasional water.
And ‘Dark Beauty’ is able to tolerate soil pH on both the acid or the alkaline lime side of neutral.
If you can grow roses, you can also grow Alpine Asters, and they make such lovely companions under the roses.
SEED SOWING ADVICE: QUICK & EASY
Sow seeds any time indoors in a punnet, or scatter seeds directly in garden in autumn or early spring.
Indoors for quick plants: Sow the seeds on surface of good quality seed raising mix.
Then barely cover the seeds with mix / vermiculate / fine grit, to a maximum of their own diameter. Because these seeds need light to germinate.
Keep the punnet moist, in a warm, well-lit position.
Temperatures of 20-21C are idea for rapid and optimum germination. But these seeds are easy to germinate.
Seedlings emerge in approx. 10-12 days.
Seed Count: 30 seeds per pack approx.
(We always aim to exceed the stated seed count, and give a generous serve).
GROWING: Aster alpinus ‘Dark Beauty’
– Height with flowers: Flowers are on 20cm stems, while the foliage is flat to the ground.
– Width: 30cm. approx. spread.
– Position: Full Sun, though will appreciate Part Shade in very hot areas.
– Soil: Well adapted to poorer, rocky or sandy soils and gravel gardens.
– Water-wise: Aster alpinus is not a thirsty plant. Normal average garden watering is ample.
– Fragrance: None.
– Frost: Very frost hardy, even in severe frost areas to below -10C.
– Growth: Very low, slowly spreading, perennial groundcover but never invasive.
– Beneficial to wildlife: Attractive to bees, butterflies as well as other beneficial pollinators.
– Care: Very easy, hardy, low maintenance plants only needing a tidy up after flowering.
– Deer & Rabbit resistant: Although they are not totally immune, Alpine Asters are not high on the menu for rabbits and deer.
– Origin: Most Asters are native to Europe, with some outriders of the family North America and even Asia.
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