144. Symphyotrichum Nees, Gen. Sp. Aster. 135. 1832.
联毛紫菀属 lian mao zi wan shu
Authors: Yilin Chen & Luc Brouillet
Herbs, perennial or annual, rhizomatous or taprooted, eglandular [sometimes stipitate glandular]. Stems ascending to erect, usually simple, sometimes branched distally, rarely proximally, usually hairy in decurrent lines at least distally, glabrous or hairy, proximally often glabrous. Leaves basal (sometimes persistent at anthesis) and cauline, petiolate (basal and lower cauline) or sessile, blade cordate to elliptic, oblanceolate, spatulate, ovate, elliptic, lanceolate, or linear, faces glabrous or hairy, sometimes stipitate glandular, margin serrate, crenate, or entire, scabrous or ciliate. Capitula radiate or disciform, numerous, usually in paniculiform, sometimes in racemiform or subcorymbiform, synflorescences, sometimes solitary. Involucre cylindric to campanulate [or hemispheric]; phyllaries in (3 or)4-6(-9) series, unequal to subequal, glabrous or hairy [rarely glandular], outer sometimes leaflike, base usually hardened, margin usually scarious, 1(-3)-veined, apex acute to obtuse, usually with a well-defined green zone, sometimes ± leaflike. Receptacles flat to slightly convex, alveolate, epaleate. Florets fertile. Ray florets few to numerous, in 1 [rarely 4 or 5+] series and laminate, or in 2-5+ series and ± elaminate, lamina white, pink, blue, or purple; disk florets few to numerous, bisexual, yellow [or rarely white], limb funnelform or cylindric, lobes 5, deltate to lanceolate; anther base obtuse, apical appendage lanceolate; style branch tip lanceolate. Achenes obovoid or obconic, sometimes fusiform, ± compressed, glabrous or strigillose, eglandular [rarely stipitate glandular], veins (2 or)3-5(-10). Pappus persistent, white to brownish, in 4 series, of numerous ± equal, barbellate, apically acute bristles.
About 90 species: Asia, Europe, North and South America; three species (two introduced) in China.
Symphyotrichum pilosum (Willdenow) G. L. Nesom var. pringlei (A. Gray) G. L. Nesom was collected from a park in Hong Kong; it may not be established in the flora. Cultivars of S. novi-belgii (Linnaeus) G. L. Nesom and other undetermined taxa (possibly horticultural hybrids) are cultivated in China but appear not to have escaped. A cultivar of S. lanceolatum (Willdenow) G. L. Nesom is cultivated for the cut-flower market.