Joe Pye was a colonial American Indian Medican Man known for his cures. He supposedly used this plant in his medicine. But whether it cures illnesses or not, it can make a spectacular show in a wild garden. Rising to as tall as 5 or even 6 ft., Joe Pye Weed blooms with big hydrangea-like lavender blooms on the top of every stem in late summer and fall.
You see Joe Pye Weed over most of the east in roadside ditches, since it seeks sunny wet spots. It usually blooms with the goldenrods. There are now several hybrids offered for perennial gardens, but most wild gardeners think the wild version is best.