Veronicastrum virginicum – Culver’s Root

COMMON NAME: Culver’s Root, False Veronica
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Veronicastrum virginicum – the suffix astrum means false, and
the common name honors Dr. Culver who prescribed the plant as an effective
BLOOMING PERIOD: Late June through July
SIZE: Large herb, 3-5 feet tall
BEHAVIOR: Perennial. When planted in areas similar to wet or mesic (well
drained) prairies the plants will spread readily. It is best propagated by division
since the seeds are difficult to germinate. Divide mature plants making sure the
each section has a bud and root.
SITE REQUIREMENTS: Wet to dry, open woods, wet-mesic prairie, shaded rocky
slopes. Growth is best in rich loamy soil.
NATURAL RANGE: Throughout Wisconsin, except the far north. New England to
Manitoba, south to South Carolina, Mississippi and eastern Texas. It is listed as
endangered in Vermont and threatened in Massachusetts and New York.
SPECIAL FEATURES: Flowers are on distinctive slender spikes that resemble
candelabra. Leaves occur in whorls of three or four.
SUGGESTED CARE: Water sufficiently the first year. Seems to thrive in moist areas
with plenty of sunshine.
COMPANION PLANTS: Lead plant, heath aster, shooting star, rattlesnake master,
flowering spurge, sawtooth sunflower, wild bergamot, mountain mint, yellow
coneflower, black-eyed Susan, compass plant, prairie dock, stiff goldenrod,
cordgrass, prairie dropseed and golden Alexanders.