Symphyotrichum laeve var. laeve (L.) A.Löve & D.Löve  
Family: Asteraceae
smooth aster, smooth blue aster
[Aster laevis f. amplifolius L., Aster laevis f. latifolius L., Aster laevis f. purpurascens L., Aster laevis var. amplifolius L., Aster laevis var. falcatus L., Aster laevis var. falcatus f. purpurascens L., Aster laevis var. laevis , Aster laevis var. latifolius L., Aster laevis var. thyrsoideus L.]
Symphyotrichum laeve var. laeve image
Merel R. Black  
Etymology: Aster: from the Greek aster, "a star," describing the radiate heads of the flowers
Plants: erect, perennial, 1'-3' tall, usually hairless, waxy forb; stems reddish; usually from short rhizomes
Leaves: mostly along the stem, thick, stiff, larger leaves less than 5 times as long as wide, stalkless to claspingleaf drawing
Flowers: head 2/3"-1" wide with 15-30 blue to purple rays, bracts (phyllaries) with a long, dark-green tip; inflorescence with a few to many heads in open clusters; blooms Aug.-Oct.
Fruits: dry, smooth seed often with a reddish, fluffy pappus
Habitat: full to partial sun; dry to moderate moisture; prairies, woods; in sandy, loamy soil
Conservation Status: Native
Symphyotrichum laeve var. laeve image
Merel R. Black  
Symphyotrichum laeve var. laeve image
Kenneth J. Sytsma  
Symphyotrichum laeve var. laeve image
Merel R. Black  
Symphyotrichum laeve var. laeve image
Merel R. Black