Natives For Your Neighborhood is a labor of love and commitment. If you use this website, help us maintain and grow it with your tax-deductible donation.


Please scroll to the bottom for more images.
Blue porterweed, Joee
Stachytarpheta jamaicensis

Copyright by: Roger L. Hammer

General Landscape Uses: Groundcover in open, dry areas. Also wildflower gardens.

Availability: Widely cultivated. Available at All Native Garden Center and Plant Nursery in Fort Myers. 239-939-9663.

Description: Medium herbaceous wildflower.

Dimensions: About 1-3 feet in height. Generally broader than tall.

Growth Rate: Fast.

Range: Its native range in South Florida obscured, but probably native to the Monroe, Dade, Collier and Lee counties, mostly along the coast; West Indies, Mexico and Central America. Widely cultivated and naturalized outside of its historic range.

Plant Map Map of select IRC data from peninsular Florida.

 Map of suggested ZIP codes north to Indian River and Manatee counties.

 Map of ZIP codes with habitat recommendations north to Martin and Charlotte counties.

Habitats: Coastal rock barrens and open disturbed sites.

Soils: Moist, well-drained sandy or limestone soils, without humus.

Nutritional Requirements: Low; it grows in nutrient poor soils.

Salt Water Tolerance: Low; does not tolerate long-term flooding by salt or brackish water.

Salt Wind Tolerance: Moderate; grows near salt water, but is protected from direct salt spray by other vegetation.

Drought Tolerance: High; does not require any supplemental water once established.

Light Requirements: Full sun.

Flower Color: Blue or purple with a white center.

Flower Characteristics: Small, semi-showy flowers on long spikes.

Flowering Season: All year.

Fruit: Two inconspicuous tuberculate nutlets.

Wildlife and Ecology: Larval host plant for tropical buckeye (Junonia genoveva) butterflies. Nectar plant for many butterflies and moths including: Bahamian swallowtail (Papilio andraemon), clouded skipper (Lerema accius), Cuban crescent (Phyciodes frisia), Dorantes longtail (Urbanus dorantes), fiery skipper (Hylephila phyleus), great southern white (Ascia monuste), gulf fritillary (Agraulis vanillae), julia (Dryas iulia), large orange sulphur (Phoebis agarithe), little yellow (Eurema lisa), long-tailed skipper (Urbanus proteus), lyside skipper (Kricogonia lyside), Meske's skipper (Hesperia meskei), Palatka skipper (Euphyes pilatka), red admiral (Vanessa atalanta), Schaus' swallowtail (Papilio aristodemus ponceanus), swarthy skipper (Nastra lherminier), tropical checkered-skipper (Pyrgus oileus) and variegated fritillary (Euptoieta claudia). Attracts many other pollinators, including bees, beetles, and hummingbirds.

Comments: Widely cultivated outside of its native range, and perhaps escaping from cultivation in central Florida and Alabama. See also the Florida Wildflower Foundation's Flower Friday page.

Copyright by: Roger L. Hammer

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Copyright by: Shirley Denton

Copyright by: Keith A. Bradley

Other data on Stachytarpheta jamaicensis available from:

Resources Links:
Find Native Plants!

Acknowledgements and past sponsors
Become a sponsor!

Major Sponsor:

Emergent Sponsors:

Canopy Sponsors:
Herbaceous Sponsors: