The roots have been burnt and their ashes used as salt to flavour foods
The stems have been used as straws
The fruits yield a pink or red textile dye
Gravel root was used by the native N. American Indians as a diaphoretic to induce perspiration and break a fever. The plant was quickly adopted by the white settlers and still finds a use in modern herbalism
The whole plant, but especially the root, is astringent, diuretic, nervine and tonic
. It works particularly on the genito-urinary system and the uterus
. Especially valuable as a diuretic and stimulant, as well as an astringent tonic
, a tea made from the roots and leaves has been used to eliminate stones from the urinary tract, to treat urinary incontinence in children, cystitis, urethritis, impotence etc
. It is also said to be helpful in treating rheumatism and gout by increasing the removal of waste from the kidneys
. The leaves and flowering stems are harvested in the summer before the buds open and are dried for later use. The roots are harvested in the autumn and dried for later use
Seed - sow spring in a cold frame and only just cover the seed. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and plant them out into their permanent positions in the summer.
Division in spring or autumn
. Very easy, the clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions.
Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Eupatorium purpureum. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.
Succeeds in ordinary garden soil that is well-drained but moisture retentive in sun or part shade
. Plants can be grown in quite coarse grass, which can be cut annually in the autumn
A very cold-hardy plant, tolerating temperatures down to about -25°c.
The bruised leaves have a vanilla-like odour.
Plants seem to be immune to the predations of rabbits.
Butterflies are attracted to this plant
Problems, pests & diseases
Associations & Interactions
There are no interactions listed for Eupatorium purpureum. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.
Polycultures & Guilds
There are no polycultures listed which include Eupatorium purpureum.
This table shows all the data stored for this plant.
Material uses & Functions
Native Climate Zones
Adapted Climate Zones
Native Geographical Range
Root Zone Tendancy
? 1.01.11.21.31.41.5 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (1998-00-00)
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? 3.03.13.2 Grieve. A Modern Herbal. Penguin ISBN 0-14-046-440-9 (1984-00-00)
? 4.04.1 Lust. J. The Herb Book. Bantam books ISBN 0-553-23827-2 (1983-00-00)
? 5.05.1 Mills. S. Y. The Dictionary of Modern Herbalism. ()
? 6.06.16.2 Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
? 7.07.1 Foster. S. & Duke. J. A. A Field Guide to Medicinal Plants. Eastern and Central N. America. Houghton Mifflin Co. ISBN 0395467225 (1990-00-00)
? 8.08.18.2 Chevallier. A. The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants Dorling Kindersley. London ISBN 9-780751-303148 (1996-00-00)
? Sanders. T. W. Popular Hardy Perennials. Collingridge (1926-00-00)
? 10.010.1 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
? 11.011.1 Thomas. G. S. Perennial Garden Plants J. M. Dent & Sons, London. ISBN 0 460 86048 8 (1990-00-00)
? 12.012.1 Phillips. R. & Rix. M. Perennials Volumes 1 and 2. Pan Books ISBN 0-330-30936-9 (1991-00-00)
? Weiner. M. A. Earth Medicine, Earth Food. Ballantine Books ISBN 0-449-90589-6 (1980-00-00)
? Fernald. M. L. Gray's Manual of Botany. American Book Co. (1950-00-00)