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Erigeron speciosus

Fleabane

Perennials, Flowers

ERIGERON

Free-blooming plants with daisylike flowers. Similar to closely related Michaelmas daisy (Aster novi-belgii), except that erigeron’s flower heads have threadlike rays in two or more rows rather than broader rays in a single row. White, pink, lavender, or violet flowers, usually with yellow centers. Cut back after flowering to prolong bloom. Grow best in sandy soil. Rock garden species need especially fast drainage.

Erigeron speciosus

Native to Pacific Northwest. Erect, leafy stemmed, to 2 ft. high and wide. Summer flowers are 1–1 1/2 in. across, with dark violet or lavender rays. Widespread through Rocky Mountain area is E. s. macranthus, aspen daisy, which bears three to five flowers on each stalk; stalks nod near the top. Hybrids between E. speciosus and other species are available; they have larger flowers and come in white and pink as well as blue shades. Some of the best are azure blue ‘Blue Beauty’, violet-blue ‘Darkest of All’, light violet ‘Strahlenmeer’, ‘Pink Jewel’ (with blooms in various pink shades), carmine-pink ‘Förster’s Liebling’ (‘Förster’s Darling’), and white ‘Schneewittchen’ (‘Snow White’).

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