New England aster
Symphyotrichum novae-angliae is an aster native to eastern North America, though largely absent in the southernmost states. It is most frequently found in wet meadow habitats. It prefers to grow in full sun sites with moist soils, but tolerates occasional dryness and part shade. When given space, it grows tall and branchy and falls over- giving the overall effect of a round full flowering bush. It can also be cut back and bloom at a shorter height. It blooms in the fall, producing copious pinkish purple daisy-like flowers that attract lots of pollinators. Birds eat the seeds in the winter. This plant dies back almost completely in the winter, but leaving the dormant stems up provides necessary over-wintering habitat for pollinators. Symphyotrichum novae-angliae is an excellent specimen plant in a yard, or for restoration projects.