Systematics Class Tackles the Asters

Big day! It’s a big family, one of the largest in our flora and certainly the one whose flowers are the most evident these early autumn days — Asteraceae.  The students seemed ready to take on the vocabulary that goes along with this interesting group of plants: disk, ray, ligule, involucre, floret — words that are indispensable to using a key to identify thistle, hickory, black-eyed Susan, sunflower, dandelion, and their kin.

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