Asclepias tuberosa

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Asclepias tuberosa
Asclepias tuberosa in Farmington, CT 4.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Asterids
Order: Gentianales
Family: Apocynaceae
Genus: Asclepias
Species: A. tuberosa
Binomial name
Asclepias tuberosa
L.
Synonyms[1]
  • Acerates decumbens Decne.
  • Asclepias decumbens L.
  • Asclepias elliptica Raf.
  • Asclepias lutea Raf. nom. illeg.
  • Asclepias revoluta Raf.
  • Asclepias rolfsii Britton ex Vail

Asclepias tuberosa is a species of milkweed native to eastern North America. It is a perennial plant growing to 0.3–1 metre (1 ft 0 in–3 ft 3 in) tall, with clustered orange or yellow flowers from early summer to early fall. The leaves are spirally arranged, lanceolate, 5–12 cm long, and 2–3 cm broad.

This plant favors dry, sand or gravel soil, but has also been reported on stream margins. It requires full sun.

It is commonly known as Butterfly Weed because of the butterflies that are attracted to the plant by its color and its copious production of nectar. It is also the larval food plant of the Queen and Monarch butterflies. Hummingbirds, bees and other insects are also attracted.[2]

Use of the plant is contraindicated in pregnancy, during lactation or with infants due to the small amount of cardiac glycosides.[3]

Identification[edit]

The plant looks similar to the Lanceolate Milkweed (Asclepias lanceolata), but is uniquely identified by the larger number of flowers, and the hairy stems that are not milky when broken. It is most commonly found in fields with dry soil.

Propagation[edit]

Most easily propagated by seed. Sewn outdoors after frost, a plant will flower and produce seed in the third year. Difficult to transplant once established.[4][5]

Subspecies[edit]

  • Asclepias tuberosa subsp. interior – (Central United States)
  • Asclepias tuberosa subsp. rolfsii – Rolfs Milkweed (Southeastern United States)
  • Asclepias tuberosa subsp. tuberosa – (Eastern United States)

Common names[edit]

Common names include Butterfly Weed,[6] Canada Root, Chieger Flower,[6] Chiggerflower, Fluxroot, Indian Paintbrush, Indian Posy, Orange Milkweed, Orange root,[7] Orange Swallow-wort, Pleurisy Root,[6] Silky Swallow-wort, Tuber Root, Yellow Milkweed, White-root, Windroot, Butterfly Love, Butterflyweed, and Butterfly Milkweed.[8]

Gallery[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ "The Plant list: A Working List of All plant Species". 
  2. ^ Nina Cummings, ed. (2011). "Native Landscaping Takes Root in Chicago". In The Field (The Field Museum): 13.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)
  3. ^ University of Texas, Austin
  4. ^ Loewer, Peter 'Native Perennials For the Southeast' Cool Springs Press. Nashville, Tenn. 2005 ISBN 1-59186-121-7
  5. ^ Druse, Ken 'Making More Plants The Science, Art, and Joy of Propagation' Abrams. New York, NY. 2012 ISBN 0-517-70787-X
  6. ^ a b c "USDA GRIN Taxonomy". 
  7. ^ anonymous (2008). "Featured Native Plant: Butterfly Weed". Wild Ones: Native Plants, Natural Landscapes 6 (4). 
  8. ^ Dickinson, T.; Metsger, D.; Bull, J.; & Dickinson, R. (2004) ROM Field Guide to Wildflowers of Ontario. Toronto:Royal Ontario Museum, p. 138.

References[edit]

External links[edit]