1 European herb having small white, pink or purple flowers; naturalized as a weed in North America [syn: common comfrey, Symphytum officinale]
2 perennial herb of southeastern United States having white-rayed flower heads; formerly used as in folk medicine [syn: agueweed, thoroughwort, Eupatorium perfoliatum]
- For the Crimean town, see Eupatoria.
Systematics and taxonomyEupatorium has at times been held to contain as many as 800 species, but many of these have been moved (at least by some authors) to other genera, including Ageratina, Chromolaena, Condylidium, Conoclinium, Critonia, Cronquistianthus, Eutrochium, Fleischmannia, Flyriella, Hebeclinium, Koanophyllon, Mikania, and Tamaulipa.
The classification of the tribe Eupatorieae, including species placed in Eupatorium in the present or past, is an area of ongoing research, so further changes are likely. What seems fairly certain by now is that the subtribe Eupatoriinae seems a good monophyletic group containing Eupatorium and the Joe-pye weeds (Eutrochium), and possibly others.
UsesEupatorium species are used as food plants by the caterpillars of some Lepidoptera:
A few species or cultivars, such as E. sordidum and E. coelestinum cv. 'Album', are sometimes used as ornamental plants. In particular, they are good for structural or background plantings or to attract butterflies; especially E. itatiayense, E. maximiliani and E. squalidum are known as good honey plants.
Medical useBoneset, although poisonous to humans and grazing livestock, has been used in folk medicine, for instance to excrete excess uric acid which causes gout. Eupatorium has many more presumed beneficial uses, including treatment of dengue fever, arthritis, certain infectious diseases, migraine, intestinal worms, malaria, and diarrhea. Boneset infusions are also considered an excellent remedy for influenza. Scientific research of these applications is rudimentary at present, however.
Caution is advised when using boneset, since it contains toxic compounds that can cause liver damage. Side effects include muscular tremors, weakness, and constipation; overdoses may be deadly.
Compounds that occur in this genus include Herniarin (7-O-methylumbelliferone, 7-methoxycoumarin; in aya-pana, E. ayapana).
Selected speciesexpert-subject plants
- Eupatorium adamantium Gardner
- Eupatorium album – White Thoroughwort
- Eupatorium amygdalinum Lam.
- Eupatorium ayapana – aya-pana, Water Hemp
- Eupatorium bracteatum Gardn.
- Eupatorium cannabinum – Hemp-agrimony
- Eupatorium capillifolium – "dog-fennel"
- Eupatorium coelestinum – Bluish-flowered Hemp-agrimony, Blue Thoroughworthttp://biology.missouristate.edu/Herbarium/Plants%20of%20the%20Interior%20Highlands/Flowers/Eupatorium%20coelestinum%20-%201.jpg
- Eupatorium collinum
- Eupatorium foeniculum
- Eupatorium fortunei – fujibakama
- Eupatorium gayanum – asmachilca
- Eupatorium hyssopifolium – Hyssop-leaved Thoroughwort
- Eupatorium itatiayense Hieron.
- Eupatorium japonicum
- Eupatorium laevis DC.
- Eupatorium leucolepsis
- Eupatorium lingustrinum
- Eupatorium makinoi
- Eupatorium maximiliani Schrad. ex DC.
- Eupatorium megalophyllum
- Eupatorium officinalis
- Eupatorium pacificum
- Eupatorium perfoliatum L. – Common Boneset
- Eupatorium pyrifolium DC.
- Eupatorium resinosum – Pine Barren Boneset
- Eupatorium rotundifolium – Round-leaved Thoroughwort
- Eupatorium rufescens P.W.Lund. ex DC.
- Eupatorium serotinum – Late Boneset, Late Thoroughwort http://biology.missouristate.edu/Herbarium/Plants%20of%20the%20Interior%20Highlands/Flowers/Eupatorium%20serotinum%20N1.JPG
- Eupatorium sessilifolium L. – Upland Boneset
- Eupatorium sordidum
- Eupatorium squalidum DC.
- Eupatorium × truncatum
- Eupatorium urticaefolium
- Eupatorium vauthierianum DC.
- (2004): Encyclopedia of Folk Medicine: Old World and New World Traditions. ABC-CLIO, Inc., Santa Barbara. ISBN 1576078744
- (2000): Phylogeny and Phytogeography of Eupatorium (Eupatorieae, Asteraceae): Insights from Sequence Data of the nrDNA ITS Regions and cpDNA RFLP. Journal of Plant Research 113(1): 79-89. (HTML abstract)
- (1995): Taxonomy of Eupatorium Section Verticillata (Asteraceae). New York Botanical Garden Press. ISBN 0-89327-391-0
- (2005): The Gale Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine (2nd ed., vol. 1). Gale Group, New York. ISBN 0787674249
- (2000): Phylogeny and biogeography of Eupatorium (Asteraceae: Eupatorieae) based on nuclear ITS sequence data. Am. J. Bot. 87(5): 716-726. PMID 10811796 PDF fulltext
- (1999): A review of the toxicosis and biological properties of the genus Eupatorium. Natural Toxins 6(1): 1–14. (HTML abstract)
- (1987): The Sectional Nomenclature of Eupatorium (Asteraceae). Taxon 36(3): 618-620.
boneset in Danish: Hjortetrøst
boneset in German: Wasserdost
boneset in Spanish: Eupatorium
boneset in French: Eupatorium
boneset in Georgian: ვარდკანაფა
boneset in Lithuanian: Pūkūnė
boneset in Dutch: Eupatorium
boneset in Polish: Sadziec
boneset in Portuguese: Eupatorium
boneset in Romanian: Ayapana