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White Snakeroot vs Late Boneset

These plants often occur in the same habitat, and can be tricky to distinguish early in the season. They are more distinctive when blooming.

White Snakeroot (Ageratina altissima)

Late Boneset (Eupatorium serotinum)

A poisonous perennial herb native to eastern North America. One of the most common members of the Eupatorieae tribe of the aster family. In much of its range, among the last wildflowers to bloom in fall.
A perennial of sunny, disturbed, moist areas, native to the southeastern to central US, expanding into the northeast.
Stout, compact growth habit. Plant branches more low down, inflorescence rarely extends beyond most of the plant.
Photo © , CC BY-SA 4.0.
Tall, narrow growth habit. Some plants branch little until the inflorescence. Branches of inflorescence spread widely; inflorescence often the broadest part of the plant.
Photo © jimkingdon (iNaturalist), Public Domain.
Shorter, broader leaves.
Photo © Even Dankowicz, CC BY 4.0.
Longer, narrower leaves.
Photo © Ira Gershenhorn, Public Domain.
Averages more florets per head: usually 12-25.
Photo © Matt Berger, CC BY 4.0.
Averages fewer florets per head, usually 9-14.
Photo © kent, Public Domain.
Leaves flat or slightly wrinked around veins, but not consistently curved upwards.
Photo © lotteryd, CC BY 4.0.
Leaves often curve upwards at margins, especially higher up on the plant, often subtly evident on young plants.
Photo © Madison Gover, CC BY 4.0.
More tolerant of shady, drier habitats.
Photo © Alaina Larkin, CC BY 4.0.
Tends to be found in wetter, sunnier habitats.
Photo © David Hebert, CC BY 4.0.
Rarely grows more than 1.5 meters (5 feet) tall. Often much smaller.
Photo © , .
Can grow up to 2 meters (6.5 feet) tall. Commonly at least 5 feet.
Photo © , .

References & External Resources

These short lists show only links helpful for ID. For a complete list of references and resources also covering other aspects of ecology, visit the links section of the full article on each plant, which is the first entry here.

White Snakeroot (Ageratina altissima)

Late Boneset (Eupatorium serotinum)

Ageratina altissima | Go Botany (About This Site)

Eupatorium serotinum | Go Botany (About This Site)

Ageratina altissima (White Snakeroot) | Illinois Wildflowers (About This Site)

Eupatorium serotinum (Late Boneset) | Illinois Wildflowers (About This Site)

Ageratina altissima | Flora of North America (About This Site)

Eupatorium serotinum | Flora of North America (About This Site)

Ageratina altissima | Biota of North America Project (BONAP) (About This Site)

Eupatorium serotinum | Biota of North America Project (BONAP) (About This Site)

Ageratina altissima (White Snakeroot) | Minnesota Wildflowers (About This Site)

No corresponding entry