Symphyotrichum tenuifolium
perennial saltmarsh aster

Symphyotrichum tenuifolium Symphyotrichum tenuifolium
Photos Courtesy Renee Brecht
Britton & Brown
Botanical name: Symphyotrichum tenuifolium
Common name: perennial saltmarsh aster
Group: dicot
Family: Asteraceae
Growth type: forb/herb
Duration: perennial
Origin: native
Plant height: 1 - 2'
Foliage: Few fleshy, long narrow leaves; bract not spreading
Flower: pale pink to purple or white, 1/2" to 1" across
Flowering time: August - October
Habitat: salt marshes
Range in New Jersey: along the coastal counties on the Delaware Bay and Atlantic Ocean
Heritage ranking, if any: n/a
Misc.: Can be distinguished from the annual species by its roots system; S. tenuifolium has a fibrous root system, unlike the taproot of S. subulatum.

The flowerhead of subulatum  is also smaller. On the left, S. tenuifolium; on the right, S. subulatum: