Gen. Sp. Aster.,10, 148. 1832
w, e North America.
Species 5 (5 in the flora).
A. Gray et al. [1878–1897, vol. 1(2)], J. K. Small (1903), M. L. Fernald (1950), and L. Abrams and R. S. Ferris (1923–1960, vol. 4) considered Sericocarpus as a genus distinct from the traditionally defined genus Aster. In the last fifty years most botanists, including A. G. Jones (1980) and J. C. Semple and L. Brouillet (1980), followed A. Cronquist (1955, 1980; H. A. Gleason and Cronquist 1963, 1991), who included the species in Aster in the broad traditional sense. Semple et al. (1996) retained Sericocarpus within Aster subg. Aster on the basis of similarities in phyllary traits and the results of a restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis of chloroplast DNA (Xiang C. and Semple 1996). DNA sequence data conclusively show that Sericocarpus is more closely related to Solidago than to other North American species of asters, which themselves can no longer be placed in the genus Aster (R. Noyes and L. H. Rieseberg 1999; Semple et al. 2002).
J. L. A. Hood and J. C. Semple (2003) included observations on the triple pappus of some species of Sericocarpus in their paper on pappus variation in Solidago. They also proposed a “nomenclature” for the pappus whorls in the Astereae. The triseriate pappus of Sericocarpus is similar to that of Doellingeria and more obviously triple than in species of Solidago. M. J. Blondin et al. (2005) included detailed descriptions of pappus traits for all taxa in their multivariate study of the genus.
In the descriptions below, involucre lengths were taken at flowering. Subtending peduncle bracts are those immediately subtending heads.
|1||Cauline leaves (at least proximal) serrate (distal sometimes entire)||Sericocarpus asteroides|
|1||Cauline leaves entire||> 2|
|2||Stems and leaves moderately to densely hairy||> 3|
|2||Stems and leaves glabrate, sparsely hairy, or puberulent||> 4|
|3||Leaves obovate (proximal shorter than 30 mm), apices acuminate to slightly cuspidate; phyllaries in 4–5 series, strongly unequal||Sericocarpus tortifolius|
|3||Leaves elliptic (proximal 10–100 mm), apices acute; phyllaries in 3 series, unequal(outer 1.5 times inner)||Sericocarpus oregonensis|
|4||Leaves linear; involucres 4–6 mm (erect ray corollas longer than pappi); e United States||Sericocarpus linifolius|
|4||Leaves lanceolate, obovate, or ovate; involucres (5–)6–9 mm (erect ray corollas shorter than pappi); British Columbia, California, Oregon, Washington||> 5|
|5||Rays 2–5, laminae 3–4 mm||Sericocarpus oregonensis|
|5||Rays 1, laminae 2–3 mm||Sericocarpus rigidus|
|Author||John C. Semple + and Michelle R. Leonard +|
|Common name||White-topped aster +|
|Etymology||Greek sericos, silky, and carpos, fruit, alluding to densely pubescent cypselae +|
|Illustrator||Marjorie C. Leggitt +|
|Reference||blondin2005a + and nesom1993c +|
|Synonym||Aster Sericocarpus + and Aster Serratifolii +|
|Taxon name||Sericocarpus +|
|Taxon parent||Asteraceae tribe Astereae +|
|Taxon rank||genus +|
|Volume||Volume 20 +|