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Symphyotrichum

See list of 27 species in this genus

Though Symphyotrichum is generally regarded as an extremely difficult genus, the vast majority of New England collections are straightforward to assign to species. Once learning the large number of taxa is overcome, infrequent hybridization and rare aberrant forms are some of the few stumbling blocks that botanists will face here in New England. Identification necessitates familiarity with details of the involucral bracts and disk flowers (and the need for magnification to view the details, generally 14 × is sufficient for most people). Many hybrid combinations have been reported from New England, but more work is needed to confirm some of these. It is clear that some collections determined as hybrids are not identified correctly and merely represent atypical forms of species. Symphyotrichum ×‌gravesii (Burgess) Nesom is a poorly understood taxon that is believed to be a hybrid involving S. dumosum and S. laeve, though S. cordifolium may be a parent (rather than S. dumosum). More work is needed to understand the origin of this plant from CT. References: Semple et al. (2002), Brouillet et al. (2006).

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 Show photos of:   Each photo represents one species in this genus.