Asteraceae (Compositae) Family:

Asteraceae Bercht. & J.Presl


The plant family Asteraceae was named and described by Bedřich (Friedrich) Všemír (Wssemjr) von Berchtold and Jan Svatopluk (Swatopluk) Presl in O Prirozenosti Rostlin in 1820.

Although Asteraceae is the correct and accepted name for this family now, the name Compositae is also still used. It seems that even though the family name is Asteraceae, it is still Compositae because of the flowers, which are composite. It is, of course, the Aster, Daisy, Composite, and Sunflower family. I guess I am not supposed to capitalize those names, but I like to anyway.

The Asteraceae Family (also is very complex and very large. Plants of the World Online by Kew lists 1,679 (as of 4-27-21) accepted genera! Some information online varies from website to website and use references that may not be up-to-date. Wikipedia page, for example, used The Plant List as a reference (see link below) and says there are 1,911 genera which include 32,913 accepted species (Hmmm… That’s what the 2013 version of The Plant List says about the Compositae Family). It further states the family is divided into 13 subfamilies (which used to be separate families even though many of them have been renamed somewhat). I better stop there because the more I think, the more I write and the more I write the more confused I get. Whether or not you use the subfamilies, all the genera are still in the same family, Asteraceae or Compositae.

The problem with using The Plant List as a reference is that that website hasn’t been maintained since 2013 and used out-of-date data. Thousands of accepted names have been changed and reclassified since 2013. World Flora Online took over The Plant List, I think in 2017, and launched the new website and uploaded out-of-date data. At some point, they are supposed to upload updated data from Plants of the World Online by Kew, but as of 4-27-21 when I am updating this page, that hasn’t happened… Once that happens I will be happy to add World Flora Online as a reference…

For further information on this family of plants, please click on the links below. They take you directly to the page for the family.


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