Boltonia decurrens

Species Native to Missouri
Common Name: decurrent false aster 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Asteraceae
Native Range: Central United States
Zone: 4 to 8
Height: 4.00 to 6.00 feet
Spread: 2.00 to 4.00 feet
Bloom Time: August to September
Bloom Description: Pale pink to white
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Medium
Suggested Use: Water Plant, Naturalize, Rain Garden
Flower: Showy
Attracts: Butterflies
Tolerate: Wet Soil


Grow in average, medium to wet soils in full sun. Taller plants tend to flop and may need support. If support becomes an issue, plant stems may be pinched or cut back by 1/3 in late spring to early summer in somewhat the same way as with many asters in order to reduce plant height and minimize support needs. Plants of this species lack rhizomes.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Boltonia decurrens, commonly called decurrent false aster is a threatened species that is only known to occur along the Illinois River in west central Illinois and along the Mississippi River in both Illinois and Missouri just north of St. Louis. It typically is found in muddy bottomlands where disturbance and cyclical flooding occur. It is very similar to the much more common Boltonia asteroides, except for its decurrent foliage and lack of rhizomes. This plant typically grows in a clump to 4-6’ tall on erect, usually branching stems. Lance-shaped, grayish-green leaves (to 5” long) are distinctively decurrent. Pale pink to white daisy-like flowers (to 1” diameter) in loose panicles literally cover this aster-like plant with a profuse bloom in August and September. Each flower has pale pink to white rays with a yellow center disk. This species is also commonly called winged false aster and claspingleaf doll’s daisy. It is synonymous with and formerly designated as Boltonia asteroides var. decurrens and Boltonia latisquama var. decurrens.

Genus name honors James Bolton (1735-1799), English botanist.

Specific epithet means extend down along the stem from the leaf bases.

So named because the leaves are decurrent (clasp and extend down along the stem from the leaf bases) and the flowers look like small asters.


No serious insect or disease problems. Taller plants may need support. Susceptible to powdery mildew.


Moist sunny areas.