Sunday, September 7, 2014

Sweetscented Joe Pye Weed

Sweetscented Joe Pye Weed
Eupatorium purpureum
This plant has undergone several scientific name changes and you might more likely find it mentioned as Eutrochium purpureum.  This is another one of those confusing plants that different field guides lump or split or otherwise make it difficult.  The one thing in common seems to be that the stem is green except at the leaf nodes, where it's purple.  Perhaps they should call it Purple-node Joe Pye Weed.

This species, and several of the Eutrochium's and Eupatorium's are highly touted as landscape plants, especially for the native garden.  A quick Google of any of the scientific or common names will give you lots of ideas of how to use them.  They're bigger plants and need some room, but can be an impressive part of a native plant garden.  They are also a favorite of a variety of butterflies, so if you want some summer color and action in your garden, you can't go wrong with Joe Pye.

A distinguishing characteristic is the green stem with purple nodes
The flowers start out white, then turn purplish

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