Boneset, Thoroughwort, Feverwort, Agueweed, Indian Sage

Eupatorium perfoliatum

Family: Asteraceae (ass-ter-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Eupatorium (yoo-puh-TOR-ee-um) (Info)
Species: perfoliatum (per-foh-lee-AY-tum) (Info)
Synonym:Eupatorium perfoliatum var. perfoliatum




Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)


USDA Zone 3a: to -39.9 C (-40 F)

USDA Zone 3b: to -37.2 C (-35 F)

USDA Zone 4a: to -34.4 C (-30 F)

USDA Zone 4b: to -31.6 C (-25 F)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)

USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)

USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)

USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)

USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)

USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)

USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Bloom Color:

White/Near White

Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Late Summer/Early Fall


Grown for foliage


This plant is resistant to deer

Other details:

Unknown - Tell us

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

7.6 to 7.8 (mildly alkaline)

Patent Information:


Propagation Methods:

By dividing the rootball

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; stratify if sowing indoors

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

Self-sows freely; deadhead if you do not want volunteer seedlings next season

Seed Collecting:

Collect seedhead/pod when flowers fade; allow to dry

Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Vincent, Alabama

Barling, Arkansas

Dyer, Arkansas

Menifee, California

Cornwall Bridge, Connecticut

Atlanta, Georgia

Chicago, Illinois

Glen Ellyn, Illinois

Indianapolis, Indiana

Iowa City, Iowa

Taylorsville, Kentucky

Southborough, Massachusetts

Erie, Michigan

Minneapolis, Minnesota

Florence, Mississippi

Dover, New Hampshire

Frenchtown, New Jersey

Croton On Hudson, New York

Elba, New York

Yonkers, New York

, Newfoundland and Labrador

Downingtown, Pennsylvania

Millersburg, Pennsylvania

Rock Hill, South Carolina

Austin, Texas

Colmesneil, Texas

Arlington, Vermont

Leesburg, Virginia

Westfield, Wisconsin

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Oct 28, 2015, FlyPoison from Rock Hill, SC (Zone 7a) wrote:

In my time growing native wildflowers I've never seen a plant attract so many different species of wasps, bees and flies at the same time. My boneset was especially prolific this past growing season and several times I observed close to a dozen or more separate species. The plant may not provide the aesthetic wow that many gardeners demand, but if you love to watch and observe insects boneset is a must for you! Of course you also get the added benefit of all these insects providing added biodiversity to your gardens and surrounding areas.


On Oct 6, 2015, Tracey25 from Colmesneil, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

This is called "goat weed" in deep east Texas, where it grows abundantly at the edge of the woods. Thank you for identifying it for me - I had been wondering what it was all about. In this area, it thrives either in moist conditions or dry-as-a-bone highway shoulders. I don't know if it's considered noxious by definition, but it likes to crop up in the middle of azalea beds or at the edges of the hay pastures. Not prized, though, that's for sure.


On Jul 30, 2015, Rickwebb from Downingtown, PA wrote:

I've mostly seen it as a wild plant in moist or wet meadows in southeast PA and other areas of eastern North America. It is offered by native plant nurseries as Prairie Nursery in Westfield, WI or North Creek Nursery in se PA. It is a pretty perennial that is very good for pollinators with its white flower clusters in late summer and early autumn. Its name of Boneset comes from the highly textured leaves that clasp the stems and were once believed to facilitate the setting and healing of bones. It can be grown in a regular garden in rich, moist soil.


On Feb 17, 2009, mamooth from Indianapolis, IN (Zone 5b) wrote:

This stuff thrives in the muddy clay next to my creek. It grows so well there, I have to keep chopping it back to leave some room for the milkweed. In addition to butterflies, the blooms attract large numbers of bumblebees, sweat bees and flower wasps. That's great for the native pollinators, but it kind of puts the area off-limits to humans. I also find that the hairy stems irritate my skin. So a good plant, but not for areas too close to humans.


On Oct 29, 2008, Malus2006 from Coon Rapids, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

Its narrow leaves set it apart from some of the other boneset species. I got it since it was about to be thrown on the compost pile on another property - manage to coax it to grow and survive through the winter - blooming the next year after.


On Nov 2, 2001, poppysue from Westbrook, ME (Zone 5a) wrote:

If youre looking for show of color than this is not the plant for you. The fluffy white clusters of flowers bloom on top of stiff stems in late summer. Theyre a dull white and not especially attractive except to our butterfly friends. Its a close relative of the more known Joe Pye weed but Id have to say not as attractive for the garden. It can grow to height of 5 ft in wet soils but remains shorter in drier conditions.

Its a native perennial wild flower that was used as a valuable flu remedy through out history. An infusion of the leaves was acclaimed to relieve symptoms of brakebone fever and many other flu epidemics during the 19th century. The leaves taper to a long point and are joined at the stem opposite each other making it appear they are fused together at... read more


On Aug 31, 2001, smiln32 from Oklahoma City, OK (Zone 7a) wrote:

Easily grown in average, medium wet to wet soils in full sun to part shade. Does well in both sandy and clay soils. Needs constant moisture