Another wonderful perennial that has risen from simple wild beginnings is the Michaelmas Daisy. Commonly known here as the Easter Daisy, Michaelmas includes nearly 500 species native to every continent except Australia.
The most beautiful forms are wildflowers of North America and Europe. These are the true asters and are some of the easiest, hardiest and most rewarding perennials to grow.
From small, leafy rosettes arise tall, wiry branching stems of covered in clouds of small daisies with fine, rayed petals surrounding a yellow centre.
They make wonderful cut flowers! Height varies by species from 30cm groundcovers and “cushion” types to spectacular 120 cm giants with massive heads of double bloom.
Flower colours range from blue, purple, mauve, pink, white and crimson in single and double forms. Different varieties bloom from Christmas to frost. Once the flowers fade cut them to the ground.
Divide the clumps from now through early spring. Plant in full or part sun in a well drained, rich soil that never dries out. These asters grow best when new healthy root stock are replanted each year.
They respond well to feeding with a general plant food in spring. Liquid feeding as buds form will greatly enhance the quality, quantity and duration of the floral display. Easter Daisies look great near Japanese Anemone.
They both prefer similar conditions for ideal growth and bloom at about the same time.
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