Joe Pye weed ‘Purple Bush’
Eutrochium maculatum ‘Purple Bush’ (Joe Pye weed ‘Purple Bush’) attract numerous insects as visitors, pollinators, or serving as a food host including several species of swallow have been observed eating seed in the fall and winter.
Eutrochium maculatum (syn. Eupatorium maculatum) is a member of the Asteraceae native to eastern North America. E. maculatum can be found in the wild growing in wet black soil prairies, sedge meadows, or swampy thickets in full- or part-sun.
Lurie Garden’s plant palette includes two cultivars of Joe-pye weed: ‘Purple Bush’ and ‘Gateway’. Both selections are known for their compact growth habit and shrub-like appearance, with ‘Gateway’ reaching 2 m (78 in) in height and ‘Purple Bush’ often slightly shorter at 1.5 m (64 in) tall. Both grow to a spread of 1.2-1.5 m (50-60 in) and produce multiple purple-speckled stems with serrate, lance-shaped leaves arranged in whorls at each node.
Flower color and inflorescence density differ between the two cultivars. ‘Gateway’ produces pink flowers in a tight, upright inflorescence. Flowers of ‘Purple Bush’ are purple and produced in a less dense, looser inflorescence. Both cultivars can be seen flowering in Lurie Garden’s Dark Plate on the east side of the garden.
Eutrochium maculatum ‘Gateway’ and ‘Purple Bush’ attract numerous insects as visitors, pollinators, or serving as a food host. A few of these associations include: butterflies, moths, bee flies, honey bees, bumblebees, long-horned bees (Melissodes sp.), and leaf-cutting bees (Megachile sp.). A number of moth caterpillars use spotted Joe-pye weed as a food source, and several species of swallow have been observed eating seed in the fall and winter.
|Botanical Name||Eutrochium maculatum ‘Purple Bush’|
|Common Name||Joe Pye weed ‘Purple Bush’|
|USDA Zone||3 thru 7|
|Light Requirement||Full Sun|
|Season(s) of interest||summer, fall, winter|
|Height and Spread||4.5-5.5ft x 2-4ft (135-165cm x 60-120cm)|
|Flower Color||Purple, Pink|
|Attracts Wildlife||Hosts Caterpillars of Butterflies/Moths, Attracts Pollinators, Rarely Browsed by Mammalian Herbivores|
|Additional Information||Cultivated Form of a Native Plant. Also known as Eupatoriadelphus maculatus ‘Purple Bush’ or Eupatorium maculatum ‘Purple Bush’.|
|Location in Lurie Garden||North Dark Plate, Southeast Dark Plate, Southwest Dark Plate|