(Linnaeus) G. L. Nesom, Phytologia. 77: 280. 1995.
White heath aster, aster éricoïde
Linnaeus, Sp. Pl. 2: 875. 1753;
(Linnaeus) Semple & Brouillet;
(Linnaeus) Reveal & Keener
20—80(—100) cm, colonial or cespitose, eglandular; branched rhizomatous, or with ± cormoid, branched, woody caudices.
1—3+, ascending to erect (grayish brown to brown), sparsely to densely hispido-strigose, sometimes glabrescent proximally.
usually all except rameal withered by flowering, (light grayish green) firm apices ± white-spine-tipped (often with clusters of smaller leaves in axils); basal sessile, blades (3-nerved) oblanceolate to oblong or spatulate, 10—50 × 10—25 mm, bases attenuate, margins usually entire, rarely remotely serrate, scabrous, apices rounded to obtuse, faces usually sparsely hairy, often glabrous; proximal cauline sessile, blades (1- or 3-nerved) linear to lanceolate or oblong, 10—40(—60) × 1.5—4(—7) mm, reduced distally, bases cuneate, coarsely ciliate, margins entire, coarsely ciliate, apices acute or obtuse, faces moderately to densely strigose or hirsute; distal sessile, blades oblong-ovate, 10—40 × 1.5—3.5 mm, abruptly reduced distally, bases cuneate, margins entire, apices acute, faces moderately to densely strigose.
(1—200+) in paniculiform arrays, branches fastigiate or arrays often pyramidal, racemiform, secund, crowded.
0.5—1(—2) cm or subsessile, densely hairy, bracts dense, linear to narrowly lanceolate, usually reflexed, sometime appressed to ascending, 1.5—5(—6) mm, densely hairy, grading into phyllaries.
cylindric to campanulate, 2.5—4.5(—5) mm.
in 3—4 series, oblanceolate to ± spatulate, unequal, firm, bases (whitish to tan) ± indurate in proximal
/ 2 —
/ 3 , margins hyaline, scabrous proximally, green zones diamond-shaped, in distal
/ 2 , apices spine-tipped, (outer) spreading to reflexed or squarrose, faces (outer) sparsely to densely hispid, scabroso-hirsute adaxially, (inner) glabrous.
(8—)10—18(—20); corollas usually white, rarely pink or bluish, laminae 6—12(—20) × 0.7—1.2 mm.
6—12(—20); corollas yellow becoming brown, 2.5—4 mm, throats narrowly funnelform, lobes triangular, 0.5—0.6 mm, glabrous.
deep purple turning brown, obovoid to oblong-obovoid, ± falcate, not compressed, 1.2—2 × 0.4—0.6 mm, 7—9-nerved (faint), faces sericeous or densely strigillose;
whitish, 3—4 mm.
Varieties 2 (2 in the flora): North America, n Mexico.
, which has larger heads, longer rays, and phyllaries that are not spine-tipped, though the revolute margins can make them appear so. Two subspecies and four weakly separated varieties of
were recognized by A. G. Jones (1978). Tetraploids of var.
on the eastern prairies can be difficult to distinguish from
. A number of aster cultivars are sold under the name "Aster ericoides." These are all derived from European garden plants and are either cultivars of
S. dumosum, S. lateriflorum, S. pilosum
, or hybrids involving one of those species and another taxon. The misapplication of the epithet
dates back to the nineteenth century and has persisted in the horticultural literature.