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Symphyotrichum puniceum

Symphyotrichum puniceum (L.) A. Löve & D. Löve

 

Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp 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”
Speciespuniceum“Reddish purple”

About plant names...

Purple-stemmed aster is native to North America, found in marshy habitats.

Identification: Although these asters are named for their purple stems, they aren’t always purple, especially on younger plants. Stems are hairy and rough to the touch. Plants are 3-8' (1-2.5 m) tall, rarely up to 9½' (3 m), with stout stems up to ⅜" (1.1 cm) around. Leaves are oblanceolate, with small teeth that are usually widely spaced and may not be present, and bases that clasp the stems. They are up to 6" (15 cm) long and 2½" (7.0 cm) wide, with an easily visible central vein. Flowerheads are openly branched panicles. Individual flowers are ⅞-1½" (2.5-3.8 cm) across, and pale to dark blue-purple, sometimes almost white, with 20-50 rays. Central discs are yellow or cream-colored, with 30-50 tiny florets (as many as 90), aging to pink or purple. They appear August through November.

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

Online References:

Symphyotrichum puniceum at the Plants of the Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden

Symphyotrichum puniceum at Minnesota Wildflowers

Symphyotrichum puniceum on Wikipedia

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

Symphyotrichum puniceum at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

Symphyotrichum puniceum at the Missouri Botanical Garden

Symphyotrichum puniceum on eFloras

References:

Clemants, Steven; Gracie, Carol, Wildflowers in the Field and Forest, Oxford University Press, 2006, p. 20

Newcomb, Lawrence, Morrison, Gordon (Illus.), Newcomb’s Wildflower Guide, Little, Brown and Company, 1977, p. 456

Peterson, Roger Tory, McKenny, Margaret, Peterson Field Guides: A Field Guide to Wildflowers of Northeastern and North Central North America, Houghton Mifflin, 1968, p. 356

Symphyotrichum puniceum (Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp Aster)

8/25/2013 · Casalis State Forest, Elm Hill Rd, Peterborough, NH
≈ 6 × 4½" (16 × 12 cm) ID is uncertain

Symphyotrichum puniceum (Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp Aster)

8/22/2012 · Squanacook River Wildlife Area, Townsend, MA
≈ 11 × 7" (27 × 18 cm) ID is uncertain

Symphyotrichum puniceum (Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp Aster)

8/25/2013 · Casalis State Forest, Elm Hill Rd, Peterborough, NH
≈ 7 × 4½" (16 × 11 cm) ID is uncertain

Symphyotrichum puniceum description by Thomas H. Kent, last updated 15 Oct 2013.

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Symphyotrichum puniceum (Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp Aster)

8/25/2013 · Casalis State Forest, Elm Hill Rd, Peterborough, NH
≈ 8 × 6" (21 × 16 cm) ID is uncertain

Symphyotrichum puniceum (Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp Aster)

8/22/2012 · Squanacook River Wildlife Area, Townsend, MA
≈ 6 × 9" (15 × 23 cm) ID is uncertain

Symphyotrichum puniceum (Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp Aster)

8/25/2013 · Casalis State Forest, Elm Hill Rd, Peterborough, NH
≈ 8 × 6" (19 × 15 cm) ID is uncertain

Symphyotrichum puniceum (Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp Aster)

8/22/2012 · Squanacook River Wildlife Area, Townsend, MA
≈ 5 × 8" (13 × 19 cm) ID is uncertain

Symphyotrichum puniceum (Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp Aster)

8/22/2012 · Squanacook River Wildlife Area, Townsend, MA
≈ 5 × 4½" (12 × 11 cm) ID is uncertain

Symphyotrichum puniceum (Purple-stemmed Aster, Red-stem Aster, Swamp Aster)

8/25/2013 · Casalis State Forest, Elm Hill Rd, Peterborough, NH
≈ 2½ × 2½" (6.6 × 6.6 cm) ID is uncertain

Range: Zones 2-9:

About this map...