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Chromolaena odorata (Blue mistflower)
Pyle, Lynn

Chromolaena odorata

Chromolaena odorata (L.) King & H. Rob.

Blue Mistflower, Fragrant Mistflower, Blue Boneset, Fragrant Boneset, Jack In The Bush, Crucita, Siam Weed, Common Flossflower, Christmas Bush, Devilweed

Asteraceae (Aster Family)

Synonym(s): Eupatorium odoratum, Osmia odorata

USDA Symbol: chod

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), PR (N), VI (I)

Chromolaena odorata is a deciduous sub-shrub in North America. (It is a shrub in the tropics.) Branched stems curve upward and are usually 2-6 ft. in height. Somewhat triangular-shaped leaves are virtually evergreen in extreme s. TX. Lilac to bright purplish-blue flowers cluster together into showy, ageratum-like flower heads.

Dies back to the roots in hard winters.


From the Image Gallery

39 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Subshrub
Leaf Retention: Deciduous
Size Notes: Up to about 8 feet tall, often much shorter.
Fruit: Fruit is a cypsela (pl. cypselae). Though technically incorrect, the fruit is often referred to as an achene.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White , Blue , Purple
Bloom Time: Aug , Sep , Oct , Nov , Dec
Bloom Notes: Sometimes flowers year-round.


Native Distribution: Mexico and the Caribbean n. to Florida, s.e. TX, & the Rio Grande Plain
Native Habitat: Fence rows

Growing Conditions

Water Use: Low
Light Requirement: Part Shade
Soil Moisture: Dry
Soil Description: Various well-drained soils. Clay, Rocky, Sandy, Sandy Loam, Medium Loam, Clay Loam, Caliche type Limestone-based
Conditions Comments: Because of leggy growth habit, it should be cut back once/year. Dies back to the roots in hard winters. Can be trained on an espalier.


Use Ornamental: Ground cover, Showy, Blooms ornamental, Aromatic, Arbor, Mass planting, Patio pot plant
Use Wildlife: Nectar-bees, Nectar-butterflies, Nectar-insects, Browse, Seeds-granivorous birds
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Butterflies
Nectar Source: yes


Description: Propagate with seed or softwood cuttings.
Commercially Avail: yes

National Wetland Indicator Status

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:

Naval Air Station Kingsville - Kingsville, TX
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department - Austin, TX
NPSOT - Austin Chapter - Austin, TX
National Butterfly Center - Mission, TX
NPSOT - Williamson County Chapter - Georgetown, TX


Bibref 354 - Native & Naturalized Woody Plants of Austin & the Hill Country (1981) Lynch, D.
Bibref 318 - Native Texas Plants: Landscaping Region by Region (2002) Wasowski, S. & A. Wasowski
Bibref 291 - Texas Wildscapes: Gardening for Wildlife (1999) Damude, N. & K.C. Bender

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Web Reference

Webref 57 - Atlas of Florida Plants (2020) Institute for Systematic Botany
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 Chromolaena odorata in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Chromolaena odorata in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Chromolaena odorata


Record Modified: 2022-12-09
Research By: TWC Staff

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