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Symphyotrichum foliaceum (Alpine leafy-bract aster)
Bransford, W.D. and Dolphia

Symphyotrichum foliaceum

Symphyotrichum foliaceum (Lindl. ex DC.) G.L. Nesom

Alpine Leafy-bract Aster, Leafy Aster

Asteraceae (Aster Family)


USDA Symbol: SYFO2

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), AK (N), CAN (N)

Leafy stems with ascending branches terminated by several flower heads, each with many narrow, lavender or purple to pink rays.

As the great assemblage of plants that once made up the genus Aster is studied and better understood, it has become clear that several species within it belong in separate genera. Botanists have placed the Leafy Aster, along with nearly 80 other species formerly in the genus Aster, in the genus Symphyotrichum.


From the Image Gallery

1 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Size Notes: Up to about 2 feet tall.
Fruit: Fruit is a cypsela (pl. cypselae). Though technically incorrect, the fruit is often referred to as an achene.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: Pink , Yellow , Purple , Violet
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep


USA: AK , AZ , CA , CO , ID , MT , NE , NM , NV , OR , UT , WA , WY
Canada: AB , BC , NB
Native Distribution: Alaska south to central California, Arizona, and New Mexico and then further south to Queretaro in central Mexico.
Native Habitat: Moist places in woods, along road banks, and in mountain meadows.

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Symphyotrichum foliaceum in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Symphyotrichum foliaceum in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Symphyotrichum foliaceum


Record Modified: 2023-01-20
Research By: TWC Staff

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