Symphyotrichum ciliatum (Ledeb.) G.L. Nesom
rayless alkali aster
Asteraceae (Aster family)

Introduction to Vascular Plants


© Curtis Bjork     (Photo ID #21879)


E-Flora BC Static Map

Distribution of Symphyotrichum ciliatum
Click here to view the full interactive map and legend

Species Information

Annual herb from a taproot; stems erect, simple or branched above, glabrous, 10-70 cm tall.
Basal leaves soon deciduous; stem leaves linear or nearly so, entire, 3-12 cm long, 1-9 mm wide.
Heads disciform, several to numerous in an open, branched or spikelike inflorescence; involucres 5-11 mm tall; involucral bracts equal or more often graduated in 2-3 series, linear, the tips sharp- to long-pointed, leafy, loose, glabrous; ray flowers lacking; female flowers white or pale lavender, more numerous than the disk flowers, with tubular-threadlike corollas.
Achenes appressed-hairy; pappus white, copious and soft, surpassing the corollas.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


If more than one illustration is available for a species (e.g., separate illustrations were provided for two subspecies) then links to the separate images will be provided below. Note that individual subspecies or varietal illustrations are not always available.


Ecological Framework for Symphyotrichum ciliatum

The table below shows the species-specific information calculated from
original data (BEC database) provided by the BC Ministry of Forests and Range.
(Updated August, 2013)

Site Information
Value / Class




Elevation (metres)
893 440 1080
Slope Gradient (%)
0 0 2

Aspect (degrees)
[0 - N; 90 - E; 180 - S; 270 - W]

90 90 90
Soil Moisture Regime (SMR)
[0 - very xeric; 4 - mesic;
8 - hydric]
5 5 6
Modal Nutrient Regime
# of field plots
 species was recorded in:
Modal BEC Zone Class

All BEC Zones (# of stations/zone) species was recorded in

IDF(3), PP(1)

Habitat and Range

Moist to mesic saline or alkaline sites in the steppe and lower montane zones; frequent in S BC east of the Coast-Cascade Mountains; N to YT and NT and E to MB and S to MN, MO, KS, CO and UT.

SourceThe Illustrated Flora of British Columbia


Synonyms and Alternate Names:
Aster brachyactis S.F. Blake
Brachyactis angusta (Lindl.) Britton
Brachyactis ciliata (Ledeb.) Ledeb.
Brachyactis ciliata subsp. angusta (Lindl.) A.G. Jones
Tripolium angustum Lindl.