Boneset (Eupatorium perfoliatum)

Plant family: Aster, Asteraceae

Boneset Plant
Boneset growing under the canopy of a hardwood swamp. Not the white pattern on the leaves. They are caused by a leaf mining insect, probably the moth Bucculatrix eupatoriella.

The off-white flowers of Common Boneset (Eupatorium perfoliatum) are frequently encountered in most wet areas of the northeast United States.  It is often associated with sedges and another Eupatorium species, Joe-Pye-Weed.

Native Americans used Boneset for a wide variety of medicinal uses.  Pioneer herbalists also used the plant, and later pharmacists also prescribed it.  The name Boneset probably derives from its reported medicinal properties, it was and is used in the healing of broken bones and treatment for break-bone fever (dengue fever).  The plant was also reported to be used to kill enemies. Boneset can be purchased in extract and dry form online. Take at your own risk; I’d prefer to plant it in the ditch, in my yard.

Boneset Flowers
Top view of Boneset flowers
Boneset Leaves
The genus name of Boneset perfoliatum, comes from the way the stem of the plants appears to perforate the leaves.