Erigeron glaucus, Beach Aster
Low-growing mounding perennial to 1' tall and up to 2' wide, with lovely daisy-like purple flowers blooming for a long period through the summer. Found in coastal dunes but does well inland with some afternoon shade. It is an important nectar plant for butterflies.
We like to grow it with other dune plants, like sand sage, Artemisia pycnocephala, Sonoma sage, Salvia sonomensis, and sand aster, Corethrogyne californica. Drought-tolerant, it can handle a lot of neglect during its winter dormancy period. During a winter remodeling project, in spite of our best efforts, lumber was continually piled on a planting of Erigeron glaucus. Removing the boards in February, we were able to recover the mass of Erigeron glaucus with some consistent watering. It now looks as though it had never been buried under a pile of boards.