Many-Flowered Aster (Aster Multiflorus) has, as its name would lead one to think, very many flowers, but they are small, averaging less than ½ inch across. In fact most of the white-flowered species do have smaller flowers than the blue ones, but what they lack in size they more than make up in numbers. The stem is slender but very branching, making a bush-like plant. Each branch is terminated by short, many-flowered racemes. Our illustration shows but a tip of one of the very numerous branches. The leaves are tiny, light green and linear, smooth-edged but rough to the touch, crowded along the branches to their tips. This is a common species from Mass. to Minn, and southwards, growing in dry places everywhere and blooming from Sept. to Nov.
A. Aster vimineus.
B. Starved Aster. Aster lateriflorus.
Small White Aster (Aster Vimineus) is still another of the tiny, white-flowered asters. It has a tall, branching stem from 2 to 5 feet high; the branches nearly all leave the main stalk in a horizontal position. The inflorescence is chiefly on one side of the flowering stems. This species can usually be identified by the reddish tinge to its stems. The leaves are linear or narrowly lanceolate, the larger ones being obscurely serrate. The flowers are tiny, smaller than any of the preceding, but have from 15 to 25 narrow white rays. It grows in moist soil from Me. to Minn, and southwards.
Starved Aster (Aster Lateriflorus) is a much branched, slightly hairy species, common in thickets and fields from N. S. to 'Ontario and southwards. The leaves are lanceolate and taper to a point at each end; they are rather rough and sharply serrate in the middle. The plant has a "starved" appearance owing to the rather brownish colored disc florets; the ray florets are usually less in number than most of the other white species.
Daisy Fleabane (Erigeron Ramosus) is a common aster-like species found blooming in fields from June until October. The stem is rough-hairy and grows 1 or 2 feet tall. The leaves are also slightly hairy, smooth-edged, the upper ones lanceolate, the lower rather spatulate in shape tapering into slender petioles. The small, daisy-like flowers grow in a corymbed cluster at the top of the stem; they are about ½ inch across, have quite a broad disc of tubular, yellowish florets and very numerous, narrow, ray flerets; these rays range from 40 to 80 in number; at night they usually turn upwards so as to partly enfold the disc.
A. Flat-topped Wood Aster.
B. Sharp-leaved Wood Aster.
Aster umbellatus is a common species of white aster found growing in moist woodland or thickets. It has smooth, leafy, branching stems from 2 to 6 feet tall. The leaves are lanceolate, pointed at each end and the lower ones are serrate.
The numerous flower heads are in compound flat-topped corymbs; the center, or disc florets, are greenish-yellow and are surrounded by a few white rays, usually less than a dozen. It is a common species throughout the northern parts of the United States.