Butterburs are a perennial ground cover best suited to wet soil at the edge of a pond, stream, marsh, or river. With their fast-growing root systems, they can create a dense mat of ground cover to prevent erosion on a slope.
When to Plant
Cabbage flowers in spring
Butterburs 101: A Field Guide
Native to Asia, giant butterburs (Petasites japonicus) have the curious ability to emerge in early spring as clumps of cauliflower-shaped posies and by summertime to grow enormous 3-foot leaves that act as a dense ground cover, only to die back completely in winter.
Perennial butterburs are happiest in moist soil, at the edge of a pond, marsh, or river in a temperate climate (they are winter hardy in USDA growing zones 4 to 9). Tip: This is a plant to admire from a distance rather than to try to wade through its quilt of rhizomatous roots.