Page author: David Giblin
Symphyotrichum chilense
common California aster, Pacific aster

Distribution: Occurring west of the Cascades crest in Washington; British Columbia to California.

Habitat: Coastal, bluffs, grasslands, open slopes, salt marsh margins, and disturbed ground.

Flowers: July-October

Origin: Native

Growth Duration: Perennial

Conservation Status: Not of concern

Pollination: Bees, flies, butterflies


Fibrous-rooted perennial from a rhizome or branched base, the stems 2-10 dm. tall, pubescent at least above.


Lower leaves oblanceolate, petiolate, entire, pubescent, early-deciduous; middle and upper leaves linear to obovate or oval, sessile, entire, usually pubescent, 2-10 cm. long and 2-20 mm. wide.


Heads few to many in an open inflorescence, with a few erect, pointed, linear bracts below the heads; involucre 5-7 mm. high, the bracts imbricate, papery below and green above, the outer rounded, the inner pointed; disk flowers numerous, yellow; ray flowers 15-40, pistillate, blue or pinkish, 7-15 mm. long; pappus of numerous capillary bristles.


Fruit an achene.

Accepted Name:
Symphyotrichum chilense (Nees) G.L. Nesom
Publication: Phytologia. 77: 277. 1995.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Aster chilensis Nees [HC]
Aster chilensis Nees ssp. chilensis [HC]
Aster chilensis Nees var. chilensis
Symphyotrichum chilense (Nees) G.L. Nesom var. chilense
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Symphyotrichum chilense in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Symphyotrichum chilense checklist entry.

OregonFlora: Symphyotrichum chilense information.

E-Flora BC: Symphyotrichum chilense atlas page.

CalPhotos: Symphyotrichum chilense photos.

USDA Plants: Symphyotrichum chilense information.

14 photographs:
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