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Anaphalis margaritacea (Western pearly everlasting)
Brundage, Stephanie

Anaphalis margaritacea

Anaphalis margaritacea (L.) Benth.

Western Pearly Everlasting, Pearly-everlasting

Asteraceae (Aster Family)

Synonym(s): Anaphalis margaritacea var. angustior, Anaphalis margaritacea var. intercedens, Anaphalis margaritacea var. occidentalis, Anaphalis margaritacea var. revoluta, Anaphalis margaritacea var. subalpina, Anaphalis occidentalis, Gnaphalium margaritaceum


USDA Native Status: L48 (N), AK (N), CAN (N), SPM (N)

Individual, erect, cottony stems grow 1-3 ft. tall and are often clumped together creating a bushy appearance. Narrow leaves are gray-green to woolly-white. Globular flowers are actually long-enduring, white, dry bracts arranged around a yellow center. Several evenly leafy woolly stems in a small patch are topped by a crowded, roundish cluster of flower heads with pearly-white bracts, sometimes with a dark spot at base of each outer bracts.

The dried stalks with their pearly-white heads are attractive in floral arrangements. The pure white flower is commonly used in dried flower arrangements.
Good dried flowers; food plant for Painted lady butterflies.

In folk medicine, it is used as a salve for burns. (Strickland)


From the Image Gallery

36 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Herb
Size Notes: Up to about 3 feet tall.
Leaf: Green
Fruit: Fruit is a cypsela (pl. cypselae). Though technically incorrect, the fruit is often referred to as an achene.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White , Yellow
Bloom Time: Jun , Jul , Aug , Sep , Oct


USA: AK , AZ , CA , CO , CT , DE , IA , ID , IL , IN , KS , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MT , NC , NE , NH , NJ , NM , NV , NY , OH , OR , PA , RI , SD , TN , UT , VA , VT , WA , WI , WV , WY
Canada: AB , BC , MB , NB , NL , NS , NT , ON , PE , QC , SK , YT
Native Distribution: Nf. to AK, s. to VA, IA, the Black Hills, NM & CA, to Baja California, Sonora, and Chihuahua in northwestern Mexico
Native Habitat: Dry prairies; open woods; roadsides; waste places

Growing Conditions

Water Use: Medium
Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
CaCO3 Tolerance: Low
Drought Tolerance: High
Soil Description: Sandy or gravelly soils.


Use Ornamental: The pure white flower is commonly used in dried flower arrangements.
Use Wildlife: Good food plant for Painted lady butterflies.
Use Medicinal: In folk medicine, it is used as a salve for burns. (Strickland)
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Butterflies
Larval Host: Skippers, American Painted Lady

Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)

American Lady
(Vanessa virginiensis)

Adult Food Source
Learn more at BAMONA
Painted Lady
(Vanessa cardui)

Larval Host
Learn more at BAMONA


Description: Increase by division in the spring or sow fresh seeds in the fall.
Seed Treatment: No treatment.
Commercially Avail: yes

Find Seed or Plants

Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.

View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.

Mr. Smarty Plants says

Host plants for American Painted Lady larvae in Ohio
June 25, 2009
Need to know what plants to plant as host plants for American Painted lady butterflies have larve coming in mail in few days , live in Vermilion Ohio on the Lake Erie. Thank You for your knowledge Pa...
view the full question and answer

National Wetland Indicator Status

Status: FACU
This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Natural Biodiversity - Johnstown, PA
Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR


Bibref 1186 - Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America (2005) Covell, C.V., Jr.
Bibref 1185 - Field Guide to Western Butterflies (Peterson Field Guides) (1999) Opler, P.A. and A.B. Wright
Bibref 1294 - The Midwestern Native Garden: Native Alternatives to Nonnative Flowers and Plants An Illustrated Guide (2011) Adelman, Charlotte and Schwartz, Bernard L.

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Web Reference

Webref 30 - Calflora (2018) Calflora
Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Anaphalis margaritacea in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Anaphalis margaritacea in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Anaphalis margaritacea


Record Modified: 2022-11-18
Research By: TWC Staff

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