Italian Aster, Aster amellus

Characteristics of Italian aster

What is an Italian aster plant?

Common name: Italian aster, European Michaelmas daisy

Scientific name: Aster amellus L.

Plant illustration

Etymology: Aster comes from the Greek term aster, which means star, referring to the shape of its inflorescences.

Other taxonomic names:

Amellus officinalis Gaterau

Amellus vulgaris Opiz S.

Aster amelloides Hoffm., Besser.

Aster elegans Nees.

Aster purpureus Gueldenst. ex Ledeb.

Aster trinervius

Diplopappus asperrimus (Nees) DC.

Family: Compositae

Origin: species native to Eurasia.

Habitat: swampy places, lakes, abundant in limestone soils. Plant widely cultivated worldwide for ornamental purposes.

Italian aster description

The Italian aster or European Michaelmas daisy (Aster amellus) is a perennial plant of 50-70cm. tall, which belongs to the family of composite plants.

Erect stems, with stolons or creeping stems, which can form extensive bushes. Rhizomatous roots.

Lower leaves petiolate and alternate, elliptical-spatulate in shape and entire margins. The upper leaves are sessile.

The inflorescence of this plant is typical of composite plants, and is called capitulum. This type of inflorescence is composed of dozens or hundreds of tiny flowers.

The capitulum or flower head has radiate flowers, that is, hermaphrodite tubular flowers, yellow in the center of the disc floret, and on the periphery of the disc floret there are ligulate flowers with ligules of varied colors, white, blue or red, which look like petals. The flower heads measure between 2.5 and 7.5cm. The flower heads measure between 2.5 and 7.5cm.

It blooms between August and September.

The fruit is an achene with a cypsela, with fairly long hairs and not branched at the tip.

Used parts

  • Leaves: Some sources indicate that the young leaves of the plant are edible. They can be consumed in salads.
  • Roots: Some phytotherapy treatises indicate them as an anti-inflammatory, antitussive, depurative and expectorant remedy. They are used in infusion for respiratory congestion.

Botanical Classification of Aster amellus

Botanical classification

Vascular plants


Seed plants


Flowering plants



FamilyAsteraceae or Compositae
SpeciesA. amellus

punto rojo More information on Aster plants

This article was endorsed by Montserrat Enrich - Journalist specializing in edible wild plants and plant uses.
Written by Editorial Botanical-online team in charge of content writing

10 June, 2024

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