Pluchea carolinensis – Cure For All

Pluchea carolinensis - Cure For All, Sourbush, Pluchea, Cattletongue (flowers)

Pluchea carolinensis - Cure For All, Sourbush, Pluchea, Cattletongue (old brown flowers)

Pluchea carolinensis - Cure For All, Sourbush, Pluchea, Cattletongue

Plant Name

Scientific Name: Pluchea carolinensis

Synonyms: Conyza carolinensis, C. cortesii, Pluchea cortesii, P. × fosbergii, P. odorata auct. non (L.) Cass., P. symphytifolia

Common Names: Cure For All, Sourbush, Pluchea, Cattletongue

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial

Growth Habit: Shrub

Hawaii Native Status: Introduced. This naturalized plant is native to tropical America, and it is a widely used medicinal plant in the Caribbean.

Flower Color: Pale pinkish lavender, Pink, White to cream

Height: To 10 feet (3 m) tall

Description: The flower heads are in branched, flat-topped, terminal flower clusters. The numerous individual flower heads are small and urn-shaped. The flower heads age to a rusty brown color and remain on the plant for a while. The leaves are green and almost hairless to finely haired above, paler dull green and velvety hairy below, smooth-edged or very finely toothed, petiolate, and variably elliptic in shape.

This weedy, adaptable shrub grows in dry to moist, sunny, open, disturbed areas from sea level to 3200 feet (1000 m) in elevation.

The similar Indian Camphorweed (Pluchea indica) has smaller, mostly hairless, almost sessile, conspicuously toothed leaves.

Special Characteristics

Foul-smelling – When rubbed, the leaves have an unpleasant, rather turpentine-like odor, and they can make your hands feel a bit sticky.

Classification

Kingdom: Plantae – Plants
Subkingdom: Tracheobionta – Vascular plants
Superdivision: Spermatophyta – Seed plants
Division: Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Subclass: Asteridae
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae – Aster family
Genus: Pluchea Cass. – camphorweed
Species: Pluchea carolinensis (Jacq.) G. Don – cure for all

More About This Plant

Hawaii County Distribution Map