White Snakeroot and Late Boneset

These two very similar white-flowered plants are among the latest to bloom in the fall.  Both are native to our area and have value for pollinators and other animals. They are very common in disturbed areas and lightly-weeded flower gardens.  

White Snakeroot (Ageritina altissima)

Like late boneset, this plant has white flowers that are attractive to insects.  The flowering heads are a bit larger and the leaves of this species are wider and "softer" than those of late boneset.  This one is even more unpalatable and even toxic to grazers. 

Late Boneset (Eupatorium serotinum)

The flowers of this species are very attractive to a wide range of pollinating insects.  The foliage is not palatable so the plant often becomes more prevalent in areas where there are grazers (like deer) because they avoid it. It is tolerant of many different conditions but really flourishes where the soils is very moist. There are several other species of native bonesets, some of which we have planted in other areas of the trail.