Distribution: Occurring east of the Cascades crest in eastern Washington; Yukon Territory to California, east across most of North America to the Atlantic Coast.
Habitat: Open places in the plains and valleys to middle elevations in the mountains.
Conservation Status: Not of concern
Fibrous-rooted perennials with a short rhizome or crown, the stems 4-12 dm. tall, the herbage glabrous and somewhat glaucous.
Leaves thick, entire or toothed, highly variable in size and shape, lanceolate or broader, the lower petioled, the other sessile and sometimes clasping.
Inflorescence open and flat-topped, its bracts broad-based and sub-clasping; involucre 5-7 mm. high, its bracts firm, imbricate, sharply pointed, with a narrow, elongate green tip; rays 15-30, blue or purple, 6-9 mm. long; disk flowers yellow; pappus of reddish capillary bristles.