Sweet Joe Pye Weed, Eupatorium purpureum

Sweet Joe Pye Weed

Eupatorium purpureum

Sun Shade:
Bloom Time: Late Summer/Early Fall
Zones: 3, 4, 5
Soil Conditions: Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil Moisture: Medium
Color: Pink
Fragrance: Yes
Height: 4 - 6 feet
Spacing: 2 feet


Sweet Joe Pye Weed (Eutrochium purpureum) is a tall native perennial that occurs in low moist ground, wooded slopes, wet meadows and thickets and stream margins . It is an erect, clump-forming perennial which typically grows 4-7 feet tall and features coarsely-serrated, lance-shaped, dark green leaves (to 12 inches long) in whorls of 3-4 on sturdy green stems with purplish leaf nodes. Tiny, vanilla-scented, dull pinkish-purple flowers in large, terminal, domed, compound inflorescences bloom in mid-summer to early fall. Each flower cluster typically has 5-7 florets. give way to attractive seed heads which persist well into winter.

The blooming period occurs from mid-summer to early fall and lasts about a month. Each floret is replaced by a bullet-shaped achene with a small tuft of hair. These achenes are dispersed by the wind. The root system is shallow and fibrous.

Habitats include open woodlands, savannas, woodland borders, thickets, partially shaded seeps, and partially shaded riverbanks. This plant can survive in wooded areas that are somewhat degraded. However, populations have a tendency to decline when the shade of overhead canopy trees becomes too dense.

Easily grown in average, medium moisture soils in full sun to part shade. Prefers moist, fertile, humusy soils which do not dry out. Cut plants to the ground in late winter. Best propagated by stem cuttings. This species generally grows better in open woodland areas .

Plant Notes and Herbal Uses
  Cut plants to the ground in late winter.
  Best propagated by stem cuttings.
  This species generally grows better in open woodland areas.
  Native Americans used this plant to cure fevers.
  Sweet Joe Pye Weed is deer-resistant.
  Makes a wonderful cut flower.
Further Information

 Wisconsin Fruit Trees
 Wisconsin Edible Berry Shrubs
 Widsconsin Edible Plants-Eat On The Wild Side
 8 Dandelion Recipes
 Wisconsin Native Plant Nurseries

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