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Callistephus chinensis
Callistephus chinensis

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Zone
Zones A1-A3, 1-45, H1, H2
Full Sun
Full
Regular Water
Moderate

Callistephus chinensis

China Aster
Asteraceae (Compositae)
Annuals

Chinese native is a splendid cut flower and an effective bedding plant when well grown and free of disease. Plants are from 8 in. to 3 ft. high, 10–18 in.wide. Some kinds are branching; others (developed mainly for florists) have strong stems and no side shoots. Leaves are deeply toothed or lobed. Bloom comes in summer. Many different flower forms: quilled, curled, incurved, ribbonlike, or with interlaced rays; some have crested centers. Flower forms are classified as peony, pompon, anemone, and ostrich feather. Colors range from white to pastel pink, rose-pink, lavender, lavender-blue, violet, purple, crimson, wine, and scarlet. Plant in rich, loamy or sandy soil.

After danger of frost is past, sow seed in place or set out plants started in flats. Keep growth steady; sudden checks in growth are harmful. Subject to aster yellows, a viral disease carried by leafhoppers. Discard infected plants; control leafhoppers. All but wilt-resistant types are subject to aster wilt or stem rot, caused by a parasitic fungus that lives in soil and is transmitted through roots into plants. Overwatering produces ideal condition for diseases, especially in heavy or poorly drained soil.

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