The New Student's Reference Work/Aster

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As'ter, a flowering plant of the thistle family, found largely in North America, some species to be found in most regions of the globe. The word means star. In England they are called Michaelmas and Christmas daisies, because they have heads like daisies and when the weather is mild they bloom as late as those periods of the year. One variety grows at a considerable height on the mountains of Europe. The wild asters of the United States are many and beautiful, there being over a hundred native species. Several months of the year they clothe the land in royal bloom, a large part of the glory of the American autumn. The aster has been suggested as the national flower, its range is so general and it blooms so profusely.

"And everywhere the purple asters nod
And bend and wave and flit."

The purple or blue asters are very numerous, ranging from the low-growing seaside aster to the tall New England aster, sometimes reaching eight feet in height. The golden aster seeks the dry roadside, white asters grow in open wood and field and by shady roadside, an abundance of tiny flowers crowning high, wide-spreading branches. A variety of the Chinese aster, having beautifully colored florets of rose, violet, and white, is called Reine Marguerite.