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Description

The California aster is a very low growing perennial with silvery gray-green leaves and bright pink daisy-type flowers. Its naturally occurs in coastal, foothill and valley habits in many parts of California where it proves to be a tough and adaptable species to sun and summer drought with a loose and scraggly habit. In comparison to plants found in nature, the cultivar L. f. 'Silver Carpet' will provide consistent growth to 4 in. high, 2- 3 ft. wide with a dense habit with the addition of low amounts of summer water. It has been introduced into cultivation for use as a bank and mixed perennial border plant among other California natives, and to attract butterflies.

Water Needs

Silver carpet aster grow well in Inland Empire gardens in areas of full sun, on well-drained soils and with low amounts of supplemental water. The chart shown below provides a recommended baseline guide to the monthly irrigation schedule and volume of supplemental water needed to maintain healthy growth throughout the average year. As shown in the chart below, there are several months indicated by an asterisk (*) when winter rains can provide sufficient moisture and irrigation is not needed. The high and low range of moisture indicates it can grow with varying amounts of water and you should make irrigation adjustments based on field observations of growth and character.

Irrigation Schedule and Graph

Low Water Use Plants

Irrigation Schedule 2

  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
Runs per Month 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 1x to 2x 0x to 2x 0x to 2x
Inches per Run 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1" 1"
 
Inches per Month 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 0" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 1" to 2" 0" to 2" 0" to 2"

Range of supplemental summer water: 7"-14"
Range of supplemental winter water: 0"-10"

 
0"-2"
0"-2"
0"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
1"-2"
0"-2"
0"-2"
  Jan* Feb* Mar* Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov* Dec*
For more information on how to use this Irrigation Schedule and Graph, follow this link.

For information how to calculate your irrigation system’s schedule and precipitation rate, please follow this link.

Plant Properties

Plant Type: Ground cover, Perennial
Foliage Character: Evergreen
Habit: Spreading, Dense, Compact
Growth Rate: Moderate
Height: 4 in.
Width: 2 ft. - 3 ft.
Water Needs: Low 2
Foliage Color: Silvery white
Flower Color: Pink
Flower Season: Summer
Soil Adaptations: Well-draining soil
Exposure Adaptations: Heat, Drought, All day sun
Function: Foliage accent plant, California native, Borders, Banks, Attracts butterflies, Small spaces

Maintenance

Silver Carpet Aster goes semi-dormant in summer, and will look a bit dried up. It's not necessarily dead, dying, or under watered. Do not try to water it until it looks lush in the middle of summer as you may over water and kill it. Allow for the seasonal "down time," and look forward to it growing vigorously again when it is ready. Only plant it in locations where you are happy to accept the summer dormant look of it. In it's growing season it is a beautiful little groundcover full of flowers that attract butterflies - I think it is worth it. For a cleaner and more compact look, cut back part-way annually, in early fall just as the plant is coming out of or is about to come out of dormancy (S).

References

Associations

Plant Lists