Monday, August 22, 2011
Blue Boneset-Eupatorium coelestinum
Blue Boneset is a harbinger of Autumn. It blooms in Tennessee starting in late August and on into the fall. I see it along the Harpeth River Greenway on the field edges and in other damp spots. I think that it is Middle Tennessee's loveliest wildflower. When I had my house and my garden, I had it blooming in every border. It spread by fibrous white roots and by seed, but was no where a nuisance since it was such a fine filler, and not hard to thin out. And since it bloomed so late, the plant looked fresh all summer.
An attractive native plant enhances a garden because it is well-adapted to the weather and the soil. It will be hardy. It will be persistent. And unlike the beautiful, but ephemeral woodland plants of spring, it will not fade to a bare patch. It will cover ground till the freeze. I am certain there must be native plant nurseries that sell it. Or you could pick the flower heads after they have faded and dried and seed it into your garden. Of course you must take pains to study the foliage so you do not weed the seedlings out.
Jack B. Carman, in his" Wildflowers of Tennessee" gives Blue Boneset a range from New York west to Kansas and points south-