Ageratina altissima 'Chocolate'

Ageratina altissima ‘Chocolate’     Family: Asteraceae
(ah-jur-ah-TY-nah  al-tis-SIH-mah)
syn. Eupatorium rugosum ‘Chocolate’

Common name: white snakeroot; purple bugbane
Zone: 4 – 9
Height: 4-5 ft (1.2-1.5m)  Spread: 2-3 ft (60-90cm)
Aspect: full sun; partial shade
Soil: fertile; moist; well-draining
Water: regular

Description: An herbaceous perennial with an upright, clump-forming growth habit. Delightfully dark maroon-brown, oblong, toothed leaves on burgundy stems. Small, fluffy white flowers appear in late summer through autumn.


Ageratina altissima 'Chocolate' - fall foliage

Special Notes: Native to North America. Quite tolerant of a range of soil conditions. Foliage is darker with more sun but plant will need more frequent water. Good cut flower. Attracts bees and butterflies. Deer and rabbit resistant. Relatively pest and disease free. Propagate by fresh seed; division in spring or autumn; softwood cuttings in summer.


Caution: All parts of the plant are toxic to humans and animals. Cows, goats, sheep, etc. may graze on this plant. The toxin is passed to humans through drinking the milk from these animals.


In our Zone 7a garden: We adore this plant for its rich foliage colour. A medium tall backdrop plant for showing off shorter plants with variegated, gold. or light green foliage. ‘Chocolate’ blooms late in the season in our garden, mid-August or early September. As the blooms are quite insignificant, we do not miss them, as the fall colours in the foliage are much preferred.


Great Plant Pick 2004


Posted on May 1, 2013
Updated on February 27, 2024