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Symphyotrichum dumosum (L.) G.L. Nesom

Bushy American-aster, long-stalked aster, rice button aster

KingdomPlantaePlants, but not fungi, lichens, or algae
SubkingdomTracheobiontaVascular plants—plants with a “circulatory system” for delivering water and nutrients
DivisionMagnoliophytaFlowering plants, also known as angiosperms
ClassMagnoliopsidaDicotyledons—plants with two initial seed leaves
SubclassAsteridaeA large class that encompasses asters
OrderAsteralesFlowering plants with a central disk flower and surrounding petals, like daisies
FamilyAsteraceaeThe aster family, which also includes daisies and sunflowers; from the Greek ἀστήρ, “star,” for the star-shaped flowers
GenusSymphyotrichumFrom Greek symphysis, “borne together or growing together, coalescing,” and trichinos, “hair, a single hair”
Speciesdumosum“Bushy, shrubby”

About plant names...

Bushy asters are North American natives.

Identification: Plants are 12-48" (30-121 cm) high, branching rather sparsely into long branches. Stems vary from hairless at the base to more hairy toward stem tips. Leaves are deep green, alternate, untoothed, and very thin, lanceolate to linear, or narrowly oval to elliptic, 1¼-4" (3.2-10 cm) long. Blooms appear from August to October. There are many flowers, but each tips a separate branch with its own leaflets and they are spread along branches, not clustered at major branch ends. The flowers therefore look evenly distributed, not densely clustered as in most asters. Individual flowers are white or pale blue/purple, ½-¾" (1.3-1.9 cm) in diameter, with 13-30 rays. Central disks are yellow, reddening with age.

See our aster comparison table here. Or check Arieh Tel’s well-researched and informative aster comparison site.

Online References:

Symphyotrichum dumosum on www.nttlphoto.com

Symphyotrichum dumosum on gobotany.nativeplanttrust.org

Symphyotrichum dumosum on hawthornhillwildflowers.blogspot.com

Symphyotrichum dumosum on the Connecticut Botanical Society's Connecticut wildflowers site

Symphyotrichum dumosum at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

Symphyotrichum dumosum on Discover Life

Symphyotrichum dumosum on eFloras


Clemants, Steven; Gracie, Carol, Wildflowers in the Field and Forest, Oxford University Press, 2006, p. 22


Symphyotrichum dumosum description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 25 May 2020.

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Symphyotrichum dumosum (bushy American-aster, long-stalked aster, rice button aster)

≈ 17 × 14" (44 × 35 cm) ID is uncertain


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