Ageratina ligustrina

Louise Sims

This unusual, autumn flowering shrub used to be known as Eupatorium ligustrinum and for once I am happy to see a plant renamed. Eupatorium are known to be a faintly thuggish lot and the idea of one with privet type leaves was not appealing. However Ageratina ligustrina is neither thuggish, nor does it bear anything but a passing resemblance to a privet.

Above shiny, neat, slightly pointy leaves, the flat heads of tiny, white flowers cover this dainty evergreen shrub from September through October and on sunny days butterflies and bees will descend en masse to enjoy one of their last late season feasts.

A ligustrina originates in Mexico and parts of Central America, and will need a sheltered position to give of its best; south or west facing, and preferably against a wall. However, in a really severe winter it could succumb, especially if the soil is anything less than well drained; but cuttings really are easy so this is always a good insurance. A hard prune in the spring, as for a buddleja, is almost all it will ask of you.

Great Plants this Month, Autumn


  1. This sounds a ‘Must Have’ for my garden. Anything that prolongs the butterfly season is very welcome. Thanks to Paddy for introducing me to the delightful 3growbags.

    1. Isn’t Louise’s column great? She is so much more knowledgeable than all three growbags combined! Thank you so much for commenting Janie, regards Caroline

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