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  Symphyotrichum laeve  (L.) Á. Löve & D. Löve

Smooth aster.....

  Synonym:  Aster laevis  L.  
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Perennial.  Stems are glabrous and often glaucous; solitary or clustered from a woody caudex or from short rhizomes.  Typical height is from 2 to 4 feet.

Flower heads are radiate.  They are clustered along ascending branches in an inflorescence that is usually taller than broad.  Rays are blue-violet, showy.  Disc floret corollas are yellow, turning reddish-brown with age.  Involucral bracts are glabrous, well-appressed.  Dark green zones are often lance- or diamond-shaped.

Leaves are relatively thick and very smooth, glabrous and glaucous on the lower surface. Stem leaves are variable in shape from narrowly lanceolate/oblanceolate to ovate or broadly elliptical.  Leaf bases are auriculate clasping.  Branch leaflets may be quite small and numerous.

Plants of dry, upland woods, clearings, fields or roadsides.  Flowers through September into early October.  Native.

The following two varieties are found in our region:

Symphyotrichum laeve  (L.)  G.L. Nesom  var.  laeve
Symphyotrichum laeve  (L.)  G.L. Nesom  var.  concinnum (Willd.) G.L. Nesom

.Similar species:  Symphyotrichum undulatum and S. patens.

 

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