Caption: Old Field Aster (Symphyotrichum pilosum) more commonly called White Heath Aster, is a native wildflower that occurs on the Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge. Despite the small size of each flower, the species is very important to bees and butterflies in the late fall. The flowers give rise to small seeds that persist on the plants well into the winter. Songbirds consume them throughout the dormant season. Old Field Aster tolerates dry, infertile soils very well but is also tolerant of poorly-drained soils.
Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge is one of six national wildlife refuges in the Coastal North Carolina National Wildlife Refuges Complex. Pocosin Lakes Visitor Center, located in Columbia, NC, is open 9am to 4pm whenever volunteer staffing is available.