Common Name: Joe Pye weed
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Native Range: Eastern and northern United States
Zone: 4 to 9
Height: 5.00 to 7.00 feet
Spread: 2.00 to 4.00 feet
Bloom Time: July to September
Bloom Description: Mauve pink
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Suggested Use: Water Plant, Naturalize, Rain Garden
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Tolerate: Deer, Clay Soil, Wet Soil
Easily grown in average, medium moisture soils in full sun to part shade. Prefers moist, fertile, humusy soils which do not dry out. Cut plants to the ground in late winter. Best propagated by stem cuttings. This species generally grows better in open woodland areas than E. purpureum subsp. maculatum which generally likes moister soils.
Joe Pye weed is a tall Missouri native perennial that occurs in low moist ground, wooded slopes, wet meadows and thickets and stream margins throughout the State (Steyermark). It is an erect, clump-forming perennial which typically grows 4-7’ tall and features coarsely-serrated, lance-shaped, dark green leaves (to 12” long) in whorls of 3-4 on sturdy green stems with purplish leaf nodes. Tiny, vanilla-scented, dull pinkish-purple flowers in large, terminal, domed, compound inflorescences bloom in mid-summer to early fall. Each flower cluster typically has 5-7 florets. Flowers are very attractive to butterflies. Flowers give way to attractive seed heads which persist well into winter.
No serious insect or disease problems. Leaves may scorch if soils are allowed to dry out.
Many people perceive Joe Pye weed to be nothing more than a roadside weed and have never seriously considered its outstanding ornamental attributes. It is a substantial plant which needs space, but when planted in groups or massed can provide spectacular flowering and architectural height. Border rears, cottage gardens, meadows, native plant gardens, wild/naturalized areas or water margins.