Description from Flora of China
Aster helenium (Linnaeus) Scopoli; Corvisartia helenium (Linnaeus) Mérat.
Herbs, perennial. Stems 60-150(-250) cm tall, pubescent. Basal leaves ± elliptic, mostly 15-40 × 10-20 cm, abaxially velvety lanate, adaxially thinly hairy, bases decurrent to strongly ribbed petioles, margins callose-denticulate, otherwise entire; cauline leaves ovate or elliptic to lanceolate, 10-30 × 4.5-12 cm, bases cordate, clasping, margins serrate. Involucre (20-)30-40 mm in diam.; outer phyllaries ovate, oblong, or deltate to lanceolate, 12-20(-25) × 6-8(-20) mm, abaxially velvety hairy, inner ones progressively narrower, less hairy, more scarious. Ray florets (15-)50-100; corolla lamina (10-)20-30+ mm. Disk corollas 9-11 mm. Achenes 3-4 mm, glabrous. Pappus of (40-)50-60 basally connate, barbellate bristles or setiform scales 6-10 mm. Fl. Jun-Sep. 2n = 20.
Inula grandis Schrenk ex Fischer & C. A. Meyer (Enum. Pl. Nov. 1: 50. 1841) was recorded from Xinjiang by Fl. URSS (25: 441-442. 1959) and Fl. Kazakhst. (8: 391. 1965). It is similar to I. helenium but distinct in having capitula numerous; outer phyllaries glabrous, ovate-lanceolate, middle phyllaries linear, apex acute; and stem and leaves glabrous. We have not seen any specimens, and its distribution in China requires confirmation.
Roadsides, wastelands, streamsides; below 2000 m. Xinjiang; widely cultivated in China [Russia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan; SW Asia, Europe, North America].