Rattlesnake master

Rattlesnake Master

Scientific Name

Eryngium yuccifolium







Endangered Status


Number of Recorded Individuals at the Zoo


Rattlesnake master

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Physical Description

Rattlesnake master, named for the erroneous belief that it could cure a rattlesnake bite, is a native prairie plant with medium grayish-green leaves and white globular flower heads that bloom throughout the summer. This perennial grows best in full-sun habitats with dry to medium soil and works well for more naturalize planting areas or massed in sunny borders. This flowering plant produces an abundance of pollen and nectar used by insects, including butterflies and bees. This species also supports the endangered rattlesnake master borer, a moth whose larvae bore into the plant’s stem and roots in order to pupate.

Native Range

Eastern United States

USDA Hardiness Zone


Average Mature Height

4 feet

Flower Color


Flowering Months



Butterflies and bees

Second Saturday Garden Tours

Join fellow nature lovers for a free, guided tour of Lincoln Park Zoo’s diverse plant life and ecosystems. During each tour, a zoo horticulturist will point out interesting species in bloom, answer questions from guests, and discuss the horticulture program’s past, present, and future.

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An Accredited Arboretum

In 2019, Lincoln Park Zoo earned Level II arboretum accreditation in recognition of the Horticulture staff’s ongoing effort to identify, label, and monitor the more than 330 species of trees, shrubs, and woody plants represented across the 49-acre park.