Asclepias speciosa

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Asclepias speciosa
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Gentianales
Family: Apocynaceae
Subfamily: Asclepiadoideae
Genus: Asclepias
Species: A. speciosa
Binomial name
Asclepias speciosa

Asclepias speciosa is a species of milkweed known commonly as the showy milkweed. It is native to the western half of North America.


This flowering plant is a hairy, erect perennial. The large, pointed, bananalike leaves are arranged opposite on the stalklike stem. The eye-catching furry pale pink to pinkish-purple flowers are arranged in thick umbels. Their corollas are reflexed and the central flower parts, five hoods with prominent hooks, are star-shaped. The fruit is a large, rough follicle filled with many flat oval seeds with luxuriant silky plumes.

Many Native American peoples use all parts of this plant for a great number of medicinal uses and ate some parts as a food.


Asclepias speciosa is a specific Monarch butterfly food and habitat plant.

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