Persicaria virginiana

Species Native to Missouri
Common Name: knotweed 
Type: Herbaceous perennial
Family: Polygonaceae
Native Range: Japan, Himalayas, northeastern United States
Zone: 4 to 8
Height: 2.00 to 3.00 feet
Spread: 3.00 to 4.00 feet
Bloom Time: August to September
Bloom Description: White to greenish-white, rarely pink
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium
Suggested Use: Naturalize
Flower: Showy
Attracts: Birds, Butterflies
Tolerate: Deer, Drought, Wet Soil


Best grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soil in part shade. Will grow in both sun and shade as long as soils are kept consistently moist. In optimum growing conditions, this plant can spread aggressively in the garden by both rhizomes and self-seeding. Best sited in a location protected from wind.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Persicaria virginiana is a vigorous perennial native to Missouri. It typically forms a spreading foliage mound 2-3 feet tall and as wide or wider. Broad, oval, medium green leaves. Tiny, white to greenish-white, beady, jumpseed-like flowers on long, slender, wand-like stems appear in mid to late summer, but are not particularly showy. Sheathed stem joints are a distinctive characteristic of all plants in this genus. Synonymous with and sometimes also sold as Polygonum virginianum or Tovara virginiana. Variegated cultivars are more commonly grown for their showy foliage.

Genus name comes from the Latin persica meaning peach-like and sagittata meaning barbed or arrow-shaped in reference to the shape of the leaves.

Specific epithet means of Virginia.


No serious insect or disease problems. Can be an aggressive spreader.


Mass in shade, woodland or cottage gardens. Also may be used in borders.