Classification Hierarchy
Kingdom Plantae
Subkingdom Tracheophyta
Superdivision Spermatophyta
Division Magnoliophyta
Class Magnoliopsida
Subclass Asteridae
Order Asterales
Family Asteraceae
Genus Ageratina
Species Ageratina altissima
White Snakeroot

Date: September 19, 2009. Location: Rochester cemetery (map)

BONAP, FNA, ITIS, USDA, VPI

Scientific Name: Ageratina altissima (syn.Eupatorium altissimum? (see ref.21))

Common Name: White Snakeroot, Tall boneset

Origin: Native

Notes: This perennial plant is toxic for live stock and humans. The milk from cows feeding on white snakeroot was responsible for "milk sickness" which was often fatal to people during frontier times. Among the victims of milk sickness was Abraham Lincoln's mother.

Additional references: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21.

Field Marks for Identification:

Flowers: July; clustered heads with white corollas, corollas and peduncles slightly villous; phyllaries with acute apices; mature cypsalae (achenes) black with four longitudinal ridges.

Leaves: opposite, petioles 10-30 mm, blade deltate to ovate-lancelate, margins coarsely (sometimes doubly) serrate, apices acuminate.

Glossary: Botanical Terms

White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot White Snakeroot