Pluchea foetida

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Pluchea foetida
Pluchea foetida Gil.jpg
Photo taken by Gil Nelson
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta – Flowering plants
Class: Magnoliopsida – Dicotyledons
Order: Asterales
Family: Asteraceae ⁄ Compositae
Genus: Pluchea
Species: P. foetida
Binomial name
Pluchea foetida
(L.) DC.
PLUC FOET dist.jpg
Natural range of Pluchea foetida from USDA NRCS Plants Database.

Common names: stinking camphorweed, stinking fleabane

Taxonomic notes

Synonyms: Pluchea imbricata (Kearney) Nash[1]

Variety: Pluchea foetida (Linnaeus) A.P. de Candolle var. foetida; Pluchea foetida (Linnaeus) A.P. de Candolle var. imbricata Kearney; P. tenuifolia Small[1]


A description of Pluchea foetida is provided in The Flora of North America.




In the Coastal Plain in Florida and Georgia, P. foetida can be found at edges of creeks and swampy woodlands, bordering deciduous forests, cypress-sweetgum swamps, cabbage palmetto/ water hickory hammocks, marshy areas, flatwood streams, deeply shaded floodplains, moist depressions of sandbars, wet drainage bordering savannas, slash pine-wiregrass flatwoods, wiregrass/saw palmetto with scattered pines and cypress bays, swamp forests, open bogs, and semi shaded mesic woods along creek swamps.[2] It has also been documented to grow in sandy ditches bordering slash pine/gallberry flatwoods, clearings of swampy woodlands, and moist depressions along trails. Associated species include slash pine, gallberry, wiregrass, saw palmetto and cypress trees.[2] It has been observed to grow in shaded and semi-shaded areas.[2] Soil types can include peaty soils, mucky moist loamy sands, coarse sands of a pond shore, and drying loamy soil.[2] Associated species include Cypress, sweetgum, cabbage palmetto, hickory, slash pine, wiregrass, saw palmetto, and gallberry.[2]

P. foetida increased its occurrence or was unaffected in response to soil disturbance by roller chopping in south Florida. It has shown regrowth or been unaffected by reestablished native habitats that were disturbed by this practice.[3]

Pluchea foetida is an indicator species for the Peninsula Savannas community type as described in Carr et al. (2010).[4]


Flowering has been documented June through November.[2][5]

Seed bank and germination

Several short-lived perennial forbs also have a seed bank persistent for at least several years.[6]

Fire ecology

Populations of Pluchea foetida have been known to persist through repeated annual burning.[7]

Herbivory and toxicology

Pluchea foetida has been observed to host assassin bugs such as Apiomerus crassipes (family Reduviidae).[8]

Conservation, cultivation, and restoration

Cultural use

Photo Gallery

References and notes

  1. 1.0 1.1 Weakley, A.S. 2020. Flora of the Southeastern United States. Edition of 20 October 2020. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Florida State University Robert K. Godfrey Herbarium database. URL: Last accessed: July 2015. Collectors: Robert K. Godfrey, D.B. Ward, James P. Gillespie, R. Kral, John Morrill, Loran C. Anderson, Almust G. Jones, Robert A. Norris, P.L. Redfearn, Bruce Hansen, JoAnn Hansen, Kent D. Perkins, John B. Nelson, L. Baltzell, O. Lakela, N. C. Henderson, R. Komarek, J. M. Kane, Cecil R Slaughter, T. MacClendon, K. MacClendon, Grady W. Reinert, R. D. Houk. States and Counties: Florida: Calhoun, Citrus, Columbia, Duval, Escambia, Franklin, Gulf, Hernando, Hillsborough, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Leon, Liberty, Levy, Nassau, Okaloosa, Orange, Pasco, Polk, Putnam, Santa Rosa, St. Johns, Taylor, Volusia, Wakulla, Walton, Washington. Georgia: Grady, Thomas. Compiled by Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.
  3. Lewis, C.E. (1970). Responses to Chopping and Rock Phosphate on South Florida Ranges. Journal of Range Management 23(4):276-282.
  4. Carr, S.C., K.M. Robertson, and R.K. Peet. 2010. A vegetation classification of fire-dependent pinelands of Florida. Castanea 75:153-189.
  5. Nelson, G. PanFlora: Plant data for the eastern United States with emphasis on the Southeastern Coastal Plains, Florida, and the Florida Panhandle. Accessed: 19 MAY 2021
  6. Platt, W. J., S. M. Carr, et al. (2006). "Pine savanna overstorey influences on ground-cover biodiversity." Applied Vegetation Science 9: 37-50.
  7. Platt, W.J., R. Carter, G. Nelson, W. Baker, S. Hermann, J. Kane, L. Anderson, M. Smith, K. Robertson. 2021. Unpublished species list of Wade Tract old-growth longleaf pine savanna, Thomasville, Georgia.
  8. [1]