Butterflyweed, Butterfly milkweed
Asclepias tuberosa

Landscape Uses:

Primarily recommended for natural landscapes and habitat restorations. Also wildflower and butterfly gardens.

Ecological Restoration Notes:

An occasional but widespread understory herb in pinelands.
Occasionally grown by native plant nurseries.
Available at Indian Trails Native Nursery in Lake Worth (561-641-9488).
Small, somewhat sprawling wildflower.
Typically 1-2 feet in height. Usually taller than broad, but sometimes falling over and forming small patches.
Growth Rate:
Widespread in North America south to Miami-Dade and Collier counties; northeastern Mexico.
Moist, well-drained calcareous or sandy soils, without humus.
Nutritional Requirements:
Low; it grows in nutrient poor soils.
Salt Water Tolerance:
Low; does not tolerate flooding by salt or brackish water.
Salt Wind Tolerance:
Low; salt wind may burn the leaves.
Drought Tolerance:
High; does not require any supplemental water once established.
Light Requirements:
Full sun.
Flower Color:
Red, orange or yellow.
Flower Characteristics:
Flowering Season:
All year.
Slender pod (follicle) with wind dispersed seeds.
Wildlife and Ecology:
Larval host plant for monarch (Danaus plexippus) and rarely queen (Danaus gilippus) butterflies; possible larval host of soldier (Danaus eresimus) butterflies. Nectar plant for monarch (Danaus plexippus) and other butterflies. Also provides nectar for other insects.
Horticultural Notes:
Grown from seed, which may require chilling for a few weeks if fresh. Young plants are somewhat sensitive and should not be disturbed until established.
An excellent butterfly plant for the garden.

Roger L. Hammer
Susan Trammell
Keith A. Bradley
Shirley Denton
Shirley Denton
Shirley Denton