Jun. 25, 2017

smooth aster, Symphyotrichum laeve

Smooth asters are a plant of prairies and other similar areas, which is why they now occur at Ives Fen Preserve. As the Preserve grew, various habitats were added. Upland open areas that had been farmed were acquired. Some of those were seeded with prairie plants. This was not a natural process, but it is a lot closer than what came before. Most of the plants involved were already present in more limited numbers. Some were not. The former farm where smooth aster grows was once a Henry Ford property, but that's another story. These flower heads are about an inch across, and grow in every state except AK and HI, and in AB, BC, MB, NB, ON, QC, SK, and YT. Ives Fen Preserve, Lenawee Co MI, 9/18/10.