When most people think of milkweed, this is the one that comes to mind. Fragrant flowers bloom on tall, sturdy stems in mid-summer. Monarch butterflies need milkweed to because it is the only plant their caterpillars can eat. This is an easy perennial to grow in full sun. Best planted in an area where it has room to spread. Lovely planted with ornamental grasses. They also attract native bees and a wide variety of other butterflies including; buckeyes, eastern tiger swallowtails, fritillaries, hairstreaks, painted lady butterflies, red admirals, spicebush swallowtails and queens. They also attract humming birds and hummingbird moths.
A nectar source for many butterflies, especially Monarchs
Monarchs only lay their eggs on milkweed plants
Seed pods are used in dried flower arrangements
Easy to grow, drought tolerant once established
Deer and rabbit resistant
Found in old fields, roadsides, and disturbed sites.
Monarch caterpillars can only eat the leaves from milkweed plants. They are a voracious eaters, that can consume an entire milkweed leaf in less than five minutes. They will gain about 2700 times their original weight before they turn into butterflies.
Easily grown in average, dry to medium, well-drained soils in full sun. Drought tolerant once established. Perfect for butterfly gardens, prairies and natural settings. Give them plenty of room, they will spread.