Timid gardeners need not apply, but if you want to learn how to grow asters from seed, it’s not difficult. You simply need to be willing to take chances and surrender some degree of control over the result. Most common varieties of asters found in today’s gardens are hybrids; this means that their seeds do not breed true and the new plants are not likely to resemble the parent plant. You just don’t know what you’re going to get. Packets of purchased seeds are usually a mixture of several varieties.
Starting from Seed
The easiest but least predictable method for growing asters from seed is to simply scatter the seeds over the prepared soil of a flowerbed, rake them in and water thoroughly. Plant the seeds as soon after the last frost as the soil can be worked, in a location that gets full sun and is well-drained. Then just wait for them to sprout, grow, and bloom.
Control on Location
If you want at least some control over the location of the plants, start the seeds indoors in pots a few weeks before the last frost. This method will also result in earlier blooms. Once the danger of frost is over and the ground can be worked, transplant the seedlings to your desired outdoor location. Make sure the site is well-drained and gets full sun. Instead of planting the seedlings in the ground, you can also use them in containers on a porch or patio. This is a good option if you want to restrain asters’ invasive tendencies. All you need is to make sure your containers have good drainage and full sun.