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Smooth Blue Aster

Symphyotrichum laeve

Loved by birds for the seeds & leaves, mammalian herbivores for the young leaves and bees for the flowers


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Symphyotrichum laeve (formerly Aster laevis), commonly called smooth blue aster, is a native perennial forb (wildflower) that typically occurs in prairies, rocky glades, dry open woods, roadside banks and thickets.

Wildlife notes

The nectar and pollen of the flowerheads attract honeybees, bumblebees, cuckoo bees, digger bees, leaf-cutting bees, Halictid bees , Andrenid bees, Sphecid wasps, Syrphid flies, Muscid flies, butterflies, and skippers.  Two upland gamebirds, the Ruffed Grouse and Wild Turkey, feed on both the leaves and seeds of asters. The Tree Sparrow and White-footed Mouse also eat the seeds. The young foliage of these plants is browsed occasionally by various mammalian herbivores, including deer, rabbits, and groundhogs.

Forage notes

Horses, cattle, and sheep will eat the young foliage.

Landscaping notes

This plant prefers full to partial sun, mesic conditions, and soil containing loam, clay-loam, sandy loam, or some rocky material. Smooth Blue Aster usually remains erect while in bloom and it is able to tolerate hot dry weather if it is not too prolonged. Smooth Blue Aster is easy to cultivate in gardens if taller and more aggressive plants are kept away from it. Border, wildflower, native or cottage garden. Grows well with Helianthus and Solidago. Attractive to butterflies.

Restoration notes

Habitats include mesic black soil prairies, hill prairies, savannas, rocky open woodlands, sandy woodlands, woodland edges, thickets, limestone glades, and roadside embankments. Smooth Blue Aster is usually found in higher quality natural areas where the original ground flora is intact.

This species is commonly used in the following mixes: Shadows & Sunbeams Mix

Additional information

Weight N/A

Packet, Ounce, Pound


Full Sun to Part Shade

Seeding Rate

4 bulk lbs/acre


Dry, Average



Bloom Month

Sep, Oct


Blue, Orange

# seeds/pkt


Packet coverage area

5 sq. ft

Life Cycle


What is PLS?

Pure Live Seed (PLS) is the portion of good viable seed per pound. It is a measure of the seed that is alive and able to sprout into plants. This product is sold by PLS ounce/pound. To provide one ounce/pound of viable seed, you will receive more than one ounce/pound of product. Read more about PLS here.