Jepson Flora Project: Jepson Interchange    

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Jepson Interchange (more information)
©Copyright 1993 by the Regents of the University of California
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David J. Keil, Family Editor and author, except as specified

Annual to tree
Leaves basal or cauline, alternate to whorled, simple to compound
Inflorescence: 1° inflorescence a head, each resembling a flower, 1–many, generally arrayed in cymes, generally subtended by ± calyx-like involucre; flowers 1–many per head
Flowers bisexual, unisexual, or sterile, ± small, of several types; calyx 0 or modified into pappus of bristles, scales, or awns, which is generally persistent in fruit; corolla radial or bilateral (rarely 0), lobes generally (0)4–5; stamens 4–5, anthers generally fused into cylinder around style, often appendaged at tips, bases, or both, filaments generally free, generally attached to corolla near throat; pistil 1, ovary inferior, 1-chambered, 1-seeded, style 1, branches 2, generally hair-tufted at tip, stigmas 2, generally on inside of style branches
Fruit: achene, cylindric to ovoid, generally deciduous with pappus attached
Genera in family: ± 1300 genera, 21,000 species (largest family of dicots): worldwide. Largest family in CA. Also see tribal key to CA genera: Strother 1997 Madroño 44(1):1–28. See glossary p. 25 for illustrations of general family characteristics.



Geraldine A. Allen

Annual or perennial herb from caudex or rhizome
Stem generally erect, 1–20 dm
Leaves basal, cauline, or both, alternate, generally entire; basal generally petioled
Inflorescence: heads generally radiate, solitary or in a cyme or panicle; involucre obconic to hemispheric; phyllaries in 2–6 series, outer generally < inner, free, at least inner with pale, papery margins; receptacle ± flat, naked
Ray flowers 0–many; corolla violet to pink or white
Disk flowers many; corolla and anthers generally yellow, tube generally < throat; anther tips ± triangular; style branches flat on inner face, base ± warty, tip acute, hairy
Fruit generally rounded, ± ribbed, ± brown; pappus of bristles, white to brownish
Species in genus: ± 250 species: North America, Eurasia, Africa
Etymology: (Greek: star)
Reference: [Allen 1984 Syst Bot 9:175–191]
Recent taxonomic note: *See also revised taxonomy of Nesom 1994 Phytologia 77:141–297.


A. occidentalis (Nutt.) Torr. & A. Gray

Perennial; rhizomes long
Stems 2–8 dm, glabrous to ± hairy
Leaves basal and cauline, 5–15 cm, ± smaller upward, ± linear to narrowly elliptic, acute, ± entire, ± glabrous
Inflorescence: heads in an open cyme; phyllaries linear to oblong, acute or outer ± obtuse, green at tip, ± pale-margined at base
Ray flowers many; corollas 8–12 mm, violet
Fruit hairy
Chromosomes: 2n=16,32, 48,64
Ecology: Meadows
Elevation: 1200–2800 m.
Bioregional distribution: Northwestern California, Cascade Range, Sierra Nevada, Transverse Ranges, San Jacinto Mountains, Great Basin Floristic Province
Distribution outside California: to British Columbia, Colorado, Baja California


var. yosemitanus (A. Gray) Cronquist


Stems 3–8 dm
Leaves ± linear
Chromosomes: 2n=16,32
Ecology: UNCOMMON. Meadows
Elevation: 1200–2100 m.
Bioregional distribution: Klamath Ranges, Cascade Range, Sierra Nevada
Distribution outside California: s Oregon
Synonyms: A. paludicola Piper
Recent taxonomic note: *Symphyotrichum spathulatum (Lindl.) G.L. Nesom var. yosemitanum (A. Gray) G.L. Nesom, in part.

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bioregional map for ASTER%20occidentalis%20var.%20yosemitanus being generated
YOU CAN HELP US make sure that our distributional information is correct and current. If you know that a plant occurs in a wild, reproducing state in a Jepson bioregion NOT highlighted on the map, please contact us with that information. Please realize that we cannot incorporate range extensions without access to a voucher specimen, which should (ultimately) be deposited in an herbarium. You can send the pressed, dried collection (with complete locality information indicated) to us (e-mail us for details) or refer us to an accessioned herbarium specimen. Non-occurrence of a plant in an indicated area is difficult to document, but we will especially value your input on those types of possible errors (see automatic conversion of distribution data to maps).

Retrieve Jepson Interchange Index to Plant Names entry for Aster occidentalis var. yosemitanus
Retrieve dichotomous key for Aster
Retrieve multiple-entry key (MEKA) for Aster
Overlay Consortium of California Herbaria specimen data by county on this map
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