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Rattlesnake Master - Eryngium yuccifolium

Rattlesnake Master - Eryngium yuccifolium

Eryngium yuccifolium, also known as Rattlesnake Master, is a perennial wildflower native to southern Michigan. Its scientific name references leaves which look like yucca, especially the spring rossette.  The common name references a time when this plant was used to treat snake bites.

It can reach 4 feet tall and flowers from July to September with a white blossom.  This is a strong strucutural plant in the garden, adding a bit of height and loads of texture with a long bloom time. Rattlesnake Master prefers full sun and medium to dry sandy soil.  It will grow in clay, loam or sand, but richer soils or shade can make it sprawl or flop. It is also a good choice for shallow or rocky soils and is drought resistant.  


It is a member of the carrot/parsley family, so it serves as a host plant for Black Swallowtail butterflies. It is attractive to smaller native bees, moths, and other pollinators. Deer and rabbits, however, find its coarse foliage and flowers unpallitable. Because of this, it can be used to shield more tasty plants from passing deer.

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