Each flower species have a unique meaning and purpose. Many times, the specific color of a flower can have personal symbolism.
The aster flower meaning is a star, translated from Latin and Greek. These are whimsical flowers with delicate thin petals and spindly bright centers. Aster flowers can also mean charm, patience, or daintiness. The primary representations of asters are love, faith, and wisdom.
Overview of an Aster Flower
Aster flowers got their name due to the unique star head shape of the blossoms. These star flowers have had significant meanings in multiple cultures throughout history.
The aster belongs to the Asteraceae family, a category of 180 plant species, and is a relative of the daisy flower. These flowers are drought resistant, making them great for desert landscapes.
This species – consisting of over 600 variations – produces tiny clusters of flowers that resemble a daisy shape, making the two flowers commonly confused with each other.
Asters have a composite construction, translating to a center core made with tiny flowers surrounded by long flimsy petals.
In the wild, you see asters in blues and purples. But cultivated variations can be white, blue, lavender, purple, or pink. These blooms are popular for cut bouquets due to vase life of up to three weeks.
How to Care for the Aster Plant
Asters are an easy breed to plant and grow. With the potential to reach up to four feet tall, you can plant asters as seeds, although it’s more common to buy them as plants.
You’ll need to choose a well-draining planting spot with partial to full sun. Asters need to remain moist throughout the blooming season. Water your plants at the base, avoiding water splashing on the foliage. Damp leaves and flowers can develop fungal diseases and powdery mildew.
Your plants can benefit from a dose of balanced plant food once monthly. And if your asters start getting a lot of dead flowers, deadheading them can encourage future bloom growth.
What Is the Aster Flower Meaning?
Aster’s lengthy history and thousands of years of existence have given this wild bloom many symbols. But, at its core, aster – translated from the Latin and Greek word – means star.
September Aster Flower Meaning
The aster is the birth flower of September. Although you plant aster seeds in the spring, this daisy-like herb blooms best in the fall.
What Do Aster Flowers Symbolize?
Although translating to star, asters are also symbolic for:
- Afterthought (or if only it ended differently)
- Love of variety or new things
What Is the Cultural Significance of an Aster?
Aster flowers have considerable cultural significance throughout the globe, from Greece, where it’s the emblem for Venus, Native American, English, and German – who believe the aster has magical powers – to the French.
In France, it’s believed the aster is the eye of Christ. For this reason, asters were placed on graves of fallen soldiers. The gesture symbolizes the wish that things had been different during battle.
Aster is a Greek word for a star – Astron for plural stars. Ancient Greeks believed the aster flower was sacred to the gods, prompting the placement of these blooms at altars and temples.
One Greek mythology legend claims the aster flower came from the tears of Astraea, the Goddess of justice. During the Iron Age, humans learned to create tools and iron weapons, which they used to kill each other.
Angered by the senseless death, Jupiter decided to end the human race with a flood. However, before unleashing the waters, all gods fled from the earth. Astraea became the last spiritual being to leave, and she was so overwhelmed with sadness that she begged Zeus to make her into a star.
Then once the flood ended, Astraea wept for the loss of innocent lives. As her tears fell from the sky, they became stardust sprinkled onto the earth, creating the delicate and graceful aster. But it’s also said that Astraea began to cry because few stars existed in the sky.
Another Greek lore is the story of Theseus and his unintentional killing of his father, King Aegeus. Every year, the Athens king sent seven men and seven women to the king of Crete as a sacrifice to the Minotaur.
It’s said that Theseus volunteered to join the journey to destroy the Minotaur. He was to sail home under a white flag when he returned home victorious.
Although Theseus successfully destroyed the mythical creature with a human body and bullhead and tail, he forgot to change his sail from black to white. As he returned to port under a black flag, King Aegeus assumed it was a sign of his son’s death and committed suicide.
Rumor says that the first asters blossomed from the ground where the King’s blood spilled, staining the earth. These purple flowers occurred due to a spell cast by the king’s once-upon-a-time wife, Medea, a powerful sorceress.
The Cherokee also pass down a legend about aster origins. This folklore says that two tribes fought over the same village, slaughtering everyone but two sisters – one in a yellow dress, the other dyed lavender-blue doeskin.
These two girls hid in the woods and sought the help of the Herb Woman. This herbal lady, who had a gift from the gods to create magical potions, saw a future where the enemy would hunt down the two girls.
She mixed an herb concoction to sprinkle over both girls while they slept to protect them. Then she covered them with leaves. The next morning, the herbs had transformed the Cherokee girls into flowers.
The girl who wore the blue dress became the first aster flower, with the fringe forming the frilly ray flowers – outer petals. The other girl in the yellow dress became the flower goldenrod.
People believed that burning aster leaves warded off serpents and spirits in medieval times. And crushed aster roots worked as a treatment for ailing bees in Europe.
In early English times, the aster was known as the starwort. Then the flower changed its name to Michaelmas Daisy due to blooming in September when Michaelmas Day occurs.
Aster Flower Color Meanings
The color of a flower’s petals can also have specific meanings.
You can use purple asters to represent royalty, loyalty, or wisdom. Purple is the most popular color for this flower species, especially for variations grown in the wild.
As with all white flowers, white asters symbolize innocence and purity.
Pink asters are more prevalent in gardens than growing in the wild. You can use pink flowers to represent love and sensitivity. But pink can also have the same meanings as white or purple asters.
Blue aster flowers are symbolic of faith, stability, and depth.
Red flowers are the universal color for passion. You can use red asters to convey feelings of devotion.
What Is the Symbolism of an Aster Tattoo?
The most common symbolism of an aster tattoo would be for someone born in September. But this tattoo can also mean daintiness or love, depending on how it is drawn and utilized.
When Should You Give Someone an Aster?
Asters are a great gift for someone born in September. But they can also work for any occasion or holiday. It’s especially significant when given as a present to celebrate a 20th wedding anniversary.
Asters are a versatile, whimsical flower with a long, celebrated history. Once a sacred flower of the Greek gods, planting asters around your space can invoke feelings of patience and calm. You can also see asters growing wild in alpine areas, pastures, and roadsides.
Whether it’s an anniversary gift or a thoughtful gesture with a specific meaning, asters are the perfect choice for all occasions.