Coloring with Asters

aster_bloomsAsters are often seen as mum wannabes, but they are actually useful tools in the Autumn Design Kit. They color up with a thick head of blooms like Mums, but with a smaller flower and a finer texture to the petals.

Their strength is their color palette—Asters provide colors that Mums don't quite deliver. Also, when setting up a larger, more complex landscape presentation, it helps to have something similar, but different, to break up the visual arrangement.

Take a look at the color samples in the photos below. We've included Asters, Mums and Pansies—three staples of the autumn season—and mixed the colors into combinations that work off of each other:

Asters as Contrast


Notice how the purple Asters contrast nicely with the yellow Mums and Pansies. We use the white to open up the design and give it a neutral space to breathe.

Asters as Bridge


The Asters are the same color as the Mums, but they have a much finer petal texture. Notice how the yellow eye ties in with the yellow Pansy. A nice subtle bridge exists that you don't see unless you look.

Asters as Harmony


Here we set up a more complex composition with oranges, yellows and burgundies. The Asters come in over the top as a color opposite. The Pansies and Mums set up the warmer colors, and the Asters add cool accents of purple.

Notice that the Pansies start at the bottom with dark burgundy and orange; the Mums take up the orange and bring in some yellow. Asters then provide harmony with their purple tones.

It all comes together just like music.

That's what Asters do.