This section is from the book "An Illustrated Flora Of The Northern United States, Canada And The British Possessions Vol3", by Nathaniel Lord Britton, Addison Brown. Also available from Amazon: An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States, Canada and the British Possessions. 3 Volume Set..
Aster nebraskensis Britton, in Britt. & Brown, 111. Fl. 3: 375. 1898.
Stem strictly erect, slender, stiff, rough to the base, simple, or with a few short nearly erect branches, very leafy, 11/2°-21/2° tall. Leaves thick, rather rigid, ascending, lanceolate to oblong-lanceolate, entire, sessile by a subcordate base, acute or acuminate at the apex, 1'-3' long, 4"-6" wide, very rough on both sides, the midvein prominent beneath, the lateral veins obscure; heads few, terminating short leafy branchlets, 1'-1 1/4' broad; involucre broadly campanulate or hemispheric, about 3" high, its bracts green, oblong, acute, imbricated in several series, the outer quite foliaceous; rays purple, about 6" long.
Lake shores, central Nebraska. Sept. Lower and basal leaves not seen.
Aster amethystinus Nutt. Trans. Am. Phil. Soc. (II) 7: 294. 1841.
Resembles Aster novae-angliae, but is often taller, sometimes 5° high. Leaves often crowded, linear-lanceolate, entire, rough or hispidulous on both sides, partly clasping, though sometimes slightly so, at the sessile base, acute at the apex, those of the stem 1'-2' long, 2"-3' wide; heads rather numerous, racemose or corymbose, 1/2'-1' broad; involucre broadly turbinate, its bracts much imbricated, linear, hispid, not glandular, the acutish green tips spreading; rays 20-30, blue or violet, about 3" long; pappus brown; achenes canescent.
In moist soil, Vermont and Massachusetts to New York, Pennsylvania, Illinois, Iowa and Nebraska. Sept.-Oct. Specimens have intermediate characters between Aster novae-anqliae L. and Aster multiflorus L., and hybridism is suspected.
Aster unalaschensis var. major Hook. Fl. Bor. Am. 2: 7.
Stem stout, leafy to the summit, usually densely pilose-pubescent with many-celled hairs, rarely gla-brate, branched above, 4°-6° high. Leaves membranous, lanceolate, partly clasping by a narrowed base, acuminate at the apex, sharply serrate with low, distant teeth, dark green and slightly pubescent above, villous-pubescent on the veins beneath, 3'-5' long, 5"-10" wide; heads mostly solitary at the ends of short branches, 11/2' broad; involucre hemispheric, its bracts little imbricated, green, linear-subulate, densely glandular; rays 35-45, purple to violet, 5"-7" long; achenes appressed-pubes-cent; pappus tawny.
In moist soil, western Ontario to Minnesota, Oregon and British Columbia. Sept.-Oct.
Aster puniceus L. Sp. Pl. 875. 1753.
Stem usually stout, reddish, corymbosely or racemosely branched above, hispid with rigid hairs to glabrous, 3°-8° high. Leaves lanceolate to oblong-lanceolate, acuminate, sessile and clasping by a broad or narrowed base, sharply serrate, or entire, usually very rough above, pubescent on the midrib or glabrous beneath, 3'-6' long, 1'-1 1/2' wide; heads generally numerous, 1'-1 1/2' broad; involucre nearly hemispheric, its bracts linear or oblong, attenuate, imbricated in about 2 series, glabrous or ciliate, green, loose, spreading, nearly equal, sometimes broadened; rays 20-40, violet-purple or pale (rarely white), 5"-7" long, showy; pappus nearly white; achenes pubescent.
In swamps, Newfoundland to Ontario, Manitoba, Minnesota, Georgia, Tennessee, Ohio and Michigan. Races differ in pubescence, leaf-form and leaf-serration. Early purple aster. Swan-weed. Cocash. Meadow-scabish. July-Nov.