Symphyotrichum firmum (Nees) G.L. Nesom - Glossy-leaved Aster


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Symphyotrichum firmum - (image 1 of 3)



Family: Asteraceae


Moist to wet fields, swamp openings, ditches, shores, occasionally in somewhat dry places.




WV and central NY to MN, SD, and southern MO.


Herbaceous perennial, colonial by long creeping rhizomes; stem and branches puberulent in lines above, glabrous or sparingly hispid below the inflorescence; leaves rather crowded, especially upwards, firm, often shining, entire or nearly so; rays pale blue or lavender, sometimes white.


Flowers  August to October

Wetland Indicator: NA

This species is quite similar to S. puniceum and lumped with that species by some authors. Characteristics seem to overlap, but in central NY where these plants were photographed they tend to be consistently glabrous and manifestly colonial relative to S. puniceum. The leaves also tend to be more crowded in the inflorescence and the involucral bracts also tend to be less attenuate in this species. Since the range of this species is not very well understood it is not clear if it has a preference for high pH soils but here in central NY that appears to be the case.


Gleason, Henry A. and A. Cronquist. 1991. Manual of Vascular Plants of Northeastern United States and Adjacent Canada. Second Ed.

The New York Botanical Garden. Bronx, NY




Michael Hough 2018