I Love Raydon’s Favorite Aster

Nov 5, 2021 | Love This!

Name: Symphyotrichum oblongifolium ‘Raydon’s Favorite’ aka Raydon’s favorite aster.

Type of Plant: A herbaceous perennial aster, hardy in Zones 3-8 and flowering in late October into November on Cape Cod.s t

It is said that this aster is a selection of Symphyotrichum oblongifolium found by Allen Bush in the 1980’s in Tennessee.

Why I Love This Plant: We need plants that will only flower late in the season so that we can keep our eyes, hearts and minds open to seasonal celebrations. This one is a native, a pollinator support plant, and an easy perennial to grow in full sun and dry conditions.

Other reasons to love this aster abound. Bambi and Thumper generally ignore this perennial, as do plant diseases and insects.

A Word to the Wise: There are two ways to keep this aster in your garden. The first is to let it do what it does, gently spreading and mingling with other perennials, and growing to between two and three feet high.  The other is to shear the foliage down by a third in late May, which results in a plant that stays below 2 feet. Only one shearing is needed and then you’re done.

Early in the fall this aster has grassy-like foliage and a few flowers. It’s the perfect plant to mix in with other drought tolerant selections. Combine this with Yucca, or little blue stem grass. 

The blue flowers of Raydon’s Favorite aster are the perfect combination with Tiger Eye Sumac fall foliage colors.

In front of my shade garden, in a sunny and dry border, I shear this aster in mid to late may to keep it shorter through the summer.

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