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Eupatorium perfoliatum (common boneset)
Species Distribution Map: Click to enlarge
Map Color Key © 2013 BONAP

Eupatorium perfoliatum

common boneset

Native east of the Rockies
Easy to grow in moist meadows
Great for retention basins

Loose, white, flat-topped flowers over deep green foliage with hairy stems. E. perfoliatum is a clumping, slightly aromatic, easy to grow plant with low maintenance. Great for attracting butterflies. E. perfoliatum may be used in border and wildflower gardens, around the banks of a pond and in areas in which it may naturalize.

Eupatorium perfoliatum LP50 - 50 per flat Availability
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3-4 Feet


2 Feet


18 Inches

Bloom Color


USDA Hardiness Zone 4-8

common boneset Interesting Notes

Historically, boneset was commonly included in medical herb gardens and used as a folk medicine. Though some authorities claim the name boneset refers to a former use of the plant to aid the healing process for broken bones, others claim that the name is in reference to the plant's use as a diaphoretic in the treatment of an 18th century influenza called break bone fever. All parts of the plant are quite toxic and bitter. Also commonly called thoroughwort. Closely related to Joe-Pye weed (Eupatorium purpureum). - Missouri Bontanical Garden

Eupatorium perfoliatum Growing and Maintenance Tips

Found in swamp margins, streambanks and thickets of Nova Scotia and Quebec to North Dakota south to Texas and Florida. Will grow in sandy to clay soils, but needs constant moisture. This prairie plant is easily propagated by seed, cuttings, division and may also be transplanted in spring. Cut back in early spring and fertilize to promote bushier growth.

Key Characteristics & Attributes

Full Sun
Full Sun
Part Sun
Part Sun
Deer Resistant
Deer Resistant

Additional Information

Soil Moisture Needs
Plug Type
Landscape Plug™
Season of Interest (Flowering)
Late Summer
Green Infrastructure
Native to North America
Propagation Type
Open pollinated