Yankeeweed, Coastal Dog Fennel

Eupatorium compositifolium Walter

Asteraceae (Sunflower Family)


Yankeeweed is an upright, mainly single-stemmed perennial in the Sunflower family. A warm-season native, it is produced from strong underground rootstock and has stems ranging from 24 to 48 inches or 0.6 to 1.2 m tall but can reach up to 1.8 m  The lower leaves are lobed, compound, and located alternately on the stems; the upper leaves are less compound and often entire. There are often short branches or fascicles of smaller leaves in the axils of the main stem leaves. Leaf segments are pubescent and gland-dotted. Its flowers are white and produced as a long head. The heads are arranged in drooping panicles and contain five white disc flowers and no ray flowers. Bloom time occurs from August to October. The fruit is an achene (i.e., one-seeded fruit in which the seed sits free inside the hollow fruit, attached by the stem of the ovule) with a crown of 20 to 30 bristles.   This plant provides poor grazing for wildlife and livestock and is often avoided.


Yankeeweed grows in disturbed areas, overgrazed pastures, dry to moist pinewoods, dunes, abandoned fields, and roadsides. It prefers sandy soils and full sun.