For gardeners and botanists it is, however, the time of the year when Michaelmas Daisies come into flower. Asters are at their finest around late September-early October - except that many of them are no longer asters; we must now refer to them as species of Symphotrichum. We now have, for example, Symphotrichum novi-belgii together with S. novae-angliae. Other "asters" are now placed with the Golden-rods in the genus Solidago, some in the genus Senecio and so on. Literally hundreds of changes have been made in recent years but of course the genus Aster still exists. It consists of Aster amellus and about 100 other species. All this may seem very frustrating but is important to our understanding of taxonomy, and is important too for horticulturalists who wish to create new hybrids. To the non-botanist the details are tedious and I will dwell on them no further but refer anyone interested to the Internet where, Salome-like*, all is revealed.
So, what I bought as Aster novi-belgii Winston S. Churchill is now Symphotrichum novi-belgii Winston S. Churchill, and I must change the label.
Symphotrichum novi-belgii Winston S. Churchill in flower in our back
garden. at Stefen Hill, Daventry. 27 September, 2016