Symphyotrichum novae-angliae

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Symphyotrichum novae-angliae
Aster novae-angliae.jpg
New England Aster

Secure (NatureServe)[1]
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae
Tribe: Astereae
Genus: Symphyotrichum
Subgenus: Virgulus
Species: S. novae-angliae
Binomial name
Symphyotrichum novae-angliae
(L.) G.L.Nesom


  • Aster altissimus Moench
  • Aster concinnus Colla
  • Aster novae-angliae L.
  • Aster novae-angliae f. geneseensis House
  • Aster novae-angliae var. monocephalus Farw.
  • Aster novae-angliae f. rosarius House
  • Aster novae-angliae f. roseus (Desf.) Britton
  • Aster novae-angliae f. spurius (Willd.) Voss
  • Aster roseus Desf.
  • Aster spurius Willd.
  • Lasallea novae-angliae (L.) Semple & Brouillet
  • Virgulus novae-angliae (L.) Reveal & Keener

Symphyotrichum novae-angliae (L.) G L Nesom. (formerly Aster novae-angliae L.), commonly known as the New England aster or Michaelmas daisy, is a flowering herbaceous perennial plant in the Asteraceae family. It is native to almost every area in North America east of the Rocky Mountains, but excluding the far north of Canada as well as some of the southern United States. Symphyotrichum novae-angliae was introduced to Europe in 1710;[2] a common garden escape, it has naturalized along roadsides and on disturbed ground.


Bees on Symphyotrichum novae-angliae flowers

The plant grows up to 120 cm (47 in) with a stout, hairy stem and clasping, lance-shaped leaves with entire margins. The flower heads are showy with yellow disc florets at the center and ray florets that range from a deep purple or rose to rarely white.

This species inhabits a wide variety of habitats and soil types, though it does not tolerate strong shade.

Uses among Native Americans[edit]

The Cherokee use a poultice of the roots for pain, an infusion of the roots for diarrhea, and sniff the ooze from the roots for catarrh. They also take an infusion of the plant for fever.[3] The Chippewa smoke the roots in pipes to attract game.[4] The Iroquois use a decoction of the plant for weak skin, use a decoction of the roots and leaves for fevers, use the plant as a "love medicine",[5] and use an infusion of whole plant and rhizomes from another plant to treat mothers with intestinal fevers,.[6] The Meskwaki smudge the plant and use it to revive unconscious people,[7] and the Prairie Potawatomi use it as a fumigating reviver.[8]


Owing to its attractive flowers, numerous cultivars have been developed. Moreover, as a result of its increased horticultural popularity, it has been introduced to many areas beyond its natural range, including Europe and several western US states.[9]


See List of Symphyotrichum novae-angliae cultivars.

Over 70 cultivars of Symphyotrichum novae-angliae have been raised, although only about 50 survive in commerce today. There is less diversity of habit and flower than in novi-belgii, whose cultivars are often derived from hybrids. The novae-angliae cultivars grow to between 90 and 180 cm in height, with the notable exception of "Purple Dome", at <60 cm.[2]


In the United Kingdom, there is one NCCPG national collection of Symphyotrichum novae-angliae.

  • Avondale Nursery, Mill Hill, Baginton, nr. Coventry CV5 6AG. 07979 093096.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Symphyotrichum novae-angliae". NatureServe Explorer. NatureServe. Retrieved 2007-06-18. 
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ Hamel, Paul B. and Mary U. Chiltoskey 1975 Cherokee Plants and Their Uses – A 400 Year History. Sylva, N.C. Herald Publishing Co. (p. 24)
  4. ^ Densmore, Frances 1928 Uses of Plants by the Chippewa Indians. SI-BAE Annual Report #44:273-379 (p. 376)
  5. ^ Herrick, James William 1977 Iroquois Medical Botany. State University of New York, Albany, PhD Thesis (p. 463)
  6. ^ Rousseau, Jacques 1945 Le Folklore Botanique De Caughnawaga. Contributions de l'Institut botanique l'Universite de Montreal 55:7-72 (p. 65)
  7. ^ Smith, Huron H. 1928 Ethnobotany of the Meskwaki Indians. Bulletin of the Public Museum of the City of Milwaukee 4:175-326 (p. 212)
  8. ^ Smith, Huron H. 1933 Ethnobotany of the Forest Potawatomi Indians. Bulletin of the Public Museum of the City of Milwaukee 7:1-230 (p. 50)
  9. ^ Brouillet, Luc; Semple, John C.; Allen, Geraldine A.; Chambers, Kenton L.; Sundberg, Scott D. (2006). "Symphyotrichum novae-angliae". In Flora of North America Editorial Committee, eds. 1993+. Flora of North America 20. New York & Oxford: Oxford University Press. p. 487.