Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Northeast Wetland Flora
Field Office Guide to Plant Species
Aster lucidulus (Gray) Wiegand
- Family: Composite (Compositae)
- Flowering: September-November
- Field Marks: This species differs from the similar Aster puniceus by its toothless leaves, long-creeping rhizomes, upper portions of the stem and branches minutely hairy in lines, the
leaves very crowded on the stem, and its pale blue to often white flower heads.
- Habitat: Fens, moist areas.
- Habit: Perennial herb from long-creeping rhizomes.
- Stems: Upright, branched or unbranched, rather stout, smooth or sparsely hairy in lines, up to 6 feet tall.
- Leaves: Alternate, simple, crowded, lanceolate to elliptic, pointed at the tip, tapering to a clasping base, without teeth, shiny and usually smooth on the upper surface, smooth or hairy on the lower surface, up to 6 inches long, up to 1 1/2 inches wide.
- Flowers: Many crowded into heads, with several heads in an open, leafy panicle, the heads 1/3-1/2 inch high, subtended by slender bracts, some of the heads forming blue or sometimes white rays, others forming a central yellow disk; ray flowers 20-60, 1/3-1 inch long; disk flowers 35-50, tubular.
- Sepals: 0.
- Petals: Some united to form flat blue or white rays, others united to form yellow tubular disk flowers.
- Stamens: 5.
- Pistils: Ovary inferior, smooth.
- Fruits: Achenes ellipsoid, smooth, about 1/8 inch long, subtended by white hairs.
- Notes: This plant is sometimes considered to be a variety of A. puniceus. Gleason and Cronquist call this plant A. firmus of the Asteraceae.
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