Search for native plants by scientific name, common name or family. If you are not sure what you are looking for, try the Combination Search or our Recommended Species lists.
Search native plant database:
Wasowski, Sally and Andy
Eryngium yuccifolium Michx.
Button eryngo, Button snakeroot, Rattlesnake master, Beargrass, Bear's grass
USDA Symbol: ERYU
USDA Native Status: Native to U.S.
Scattered along the stiff, upright stem of this unusual perennial are tough, blue-green, yucca-like, parallel-veined leaves. Smooth, rigid stem bearing thistle-like flower heads made up of small greenish-white florets mingled with pointed bracts. The individual, greenish-white flowers cluster into unique, globular heads. These occur on branch ends atop the 6 ft. plant.
Their spiny leaves make walking through clumps of these plants difficult, and also make them unpalatable to grazing livestock. They were once credited with a variety of curative powers. Their flower heads develop a bluish cast with maturity.
Plant CharacteristicsDuration: Perennial Habit: Herb Size Notes:
4-6 feet. Flower:
Flowers in 1 inch globes
Fruit: Size Class:
Bloom InformationBloom Color: White
Bloom Time: May , Jun , Jul , Aug
AL , AR , CT , FL , GA , IA , IL , IN , KS , KY , LA , MD , MI , MN , MO , MS , NC , NE , NJ , OH , OK , SC , TN , TX , VA , WI Native Distribution:
FL to coastal & blackland prairies in TX, n. to NJ, w. IN, s. MN & NE Native Habitat:
Prairies; sandy roadsides; open woods USDA Native Status: L48(N)
Growing ConditionsWater Use:
Medium Light Requirement:
Sun Soil Moisture:
Moist Soil Description:
Various well-drained soils. Conditions Comments:
Rattlesnake master can be an aggressive self-seeder. Remove seed heads to keep the plant in check. Scattered along the stiff, upright stem
of this unusual perennial
are tough, blue-green, yucca-like, parallel-veined leaves. Smooth, rigid stem
bearing thistle-like flower heads made up of small greenish-white florets. The individual, greenish-white flowers cluster into unique, globular heads. Their spiny leaves make walking through clumps of these plants difficult.
BenefitUse Ornamental: Bog or pond area, Water garden
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Usually propagated by seed planted outdoors in fall or stored, stratified and planted in spring. Mature plants can be divided in late spring or early fall. Seed Collection:
Collect seed in fall when the seed heads have turned brown. Tap
the seed out of the heads and air-dry, storing with the chaff in sealed, refrigerated containers. Seed Treatment:
Cold-moist stratify at 40 degrees for 2 months. Commercially Avail:
Recommended Species Lists
Find native plant species by state. Each list contains commercially available species suitable for gardens and planned landscapes. Once you have selected a collection, you can browse the collection or search within it using the combination search.
View Recommended Species page
Record Modified: 2012-12-07
Research By: TWC Staff