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Eupatorium rugosum

Common Name(s):

Previously known as:

  • Ageratina altissima
Phonetic Spelling
yoo-pah-TOR-ee-um roo-GOH-sum
This plant has high severity poison characteristics.
See below
Description

White Snakeroot is a herbaceous perennial that may grow to 3 feet. The leaves are opposite, ovate to sometimes heart-shaped with toothed margins and long stems. Stems are upright. Terminal, flat-topped clusters of small, white blooms mature in the late summer and fall. The 'Chocolate' cultivar has purple leaves throughout the summer.

Eupatorium rugosum is native to woodland areas in the Eastern United States. It typically occurs in rich or rocky woods, thickets, wood margins, and rocky areas. Garden uses include cottage gardens, wild gardens, woodland gardens, and naturalized areas. It may also be effective in shady corners of the border.

The plant is highly toxic and may be fatal if eaten. Reportedly, Native Americans boiled down an extract of the roots as a remedy for snakebite, hence the common name. However, settlers who drank milk from cows that fed on this plant often developed the disease called milk sickness. Milk sickness is characterized by weakness, nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, delirium, prostration and, eventually, coma.

The plant is susceptible to leaf miners and flea beetles may attack the foliage. Under optimum growing conditions, the plant can spread rapidly through self-seeding and rhizoms.

White snakeroot is easily grown in average, medium to wet, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade. While it does well in dry soil, it prefers part shade in moist, organic soils. These plants have decidedly better shade tolerance than most other species of Eupatorium. Because it spreads easily by seed, you should deadhead spent flower heads to avoid any unwanted self-seeding.

Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#butterflies#showy flowers#deciduous#songbirds#poisonous#wildlife plant#wildflowers#food source#NC native#native garden#perennials#native wildflower#fall food source
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#butterflies#showy flowers#deciduous#songbirds#poisonous#wildlife plant#wildflowers#food source#NC native#native garden#perennials#native wildflower#fall food source
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Eupatorium
    Species:
    rugosum
    Family:
    Asteraceae (Compositae) - Aster or Sunflower Family
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Native to woodlands in Eastern United States
    Wildlife Value:
    Flowers are attractive to butterflies, especially smaller species, and other pollinators. Songbirds eat the seeds.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 1 ft. 0 in. - 3 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 2 ft. 0 in. - 4 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Herb
    Native Plant
    Perennial
    Poisonous
    Wildflower
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Maintenance:
    Low
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Deep shade (Less than 2 hours to no direct sunlight)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Available Space To Plant:
    3 feet-6 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    Usda Plant Hardiness Zone:
    3a, 3b, 4a, 4b, 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b
  • Fruit:
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    White
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Flower Size:
    3-6 inches
    Flower Description:
    White snakeroot features small fluffy bright white flowers (composites with rays absent) arranged in loose, flattened clusters (corymbs to 3-4” across) atop smooth stems typically rising 3-5’ tall. It blooms from late summer to frost. Blooms late summer and fall.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Prickly
    Leaf Shape:
    Lanceolate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    3-6 inches
    Leaf Description:
    White snakeroot leaves have long, nettle-like, stalks. The leaf shape ranges from lance like to elliptic-oval, nettle-like. The 3 to 6 inch leaves are paired along the stems.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Rain Garden
    Shade Garden
    Water Garden
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Deer
    Problems:
    Poisonous to Humans
  • Poisonous to Humans:
    Poison Severity:
    High
    Poison Symptoms:
    weakness, nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, delirium, prostration, coma
    Poison Toxic Principle:
    Tremetone, a ketone
    Causes Contact Dermatitis:
    No
    Poison Part:
    Flowers
    Leaves
    Roots
    Sap/Juice
    Seeds
    Stems