Transformational Gardening

Disclaimer: Foraging can be fun, rewarding and provide health benefits. As a novice forager, I will be sharing my foraging experiences. However, in order to be safe, always consult with local foraging experts and guidebooks before beginning foraging. Children should learn to forage safely by being guided by experienced adults. Never ingest anything unless you are certain of the identification and safety of the plant. Some plant species are inedible and some are poisonous.

White Wood Aster (Common White Heart-Leaved Aster) (Eurybia divaricata) (Synonym: Aster divaricatus): Images

Date Location Notes Images
September 16, 2011 Southeastern, New Hampshire There are approximately 66 different Asters in the Northeastern United States. Fortunately, there are only four (4) Asters that meet the following two criteria:
  1. Have leaves with petioles (leaf stems)
  2. Inflorescence (cluster of flowers) is commonly flat- or round-topped with few firm and wide leafy bracts (reduced leaf structure at base of flower).
The following Asters meet this criteria:
  • Forked Aster (Midwestern White Heart-Leaved Aster) (Eurybia furcata): This Aster does not grow East of Michigan.
  • Big-Leaved Aster (Eurybia macrophylla): The flower has 9-20 rays. These flowers had mostly 8 rays. The leaves of Big-Leaved Aster are Obtuse (Blunt rounded) or Short-Acuminate (they taper to a relatively short point). The leaves of this plant are Long-Acuminate (they taper to a fairly long point). Flowers tinged with lilac or purple.
  • Schreber's Aster (Eurybia schreberi): Similar leaves to Big-Leaved Aster above except that the basal leaves tend to have a rectangular sinus (at the base of the leaf). Flower rays are 6-14 per flower. The involucre (whorl of bracts below the flower) is much thinner than for Big-Leaved Aster.
  • White Wood Aster (Common White Heart-Leaved Aster) (Eurybia divaricata): This plant. Heart-shaped leaves, but only small notch where petiole meets leaf blade. Leaves are shaply-toothed. They have a winged petiole. Leaf blad hairy, especially appressed hairs on the veins of the underside of the leaf. Upper leaves are sessile (no petioles) and often untoothed. Flower stalks have hairs, but the main plant stem was not hairy on this plant. 5-10 rays on flower, but this plant consistently had 8. Bracts imbricate (overlapping like shingles), green-tipped and the involucre (whorl of bracts below flower) tend to be somewhat white.