Asclepias fascicularis

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Asclepias fascicularis
Asclepias fascicularis.jpg

Secure (NatureServe)[1]
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Plantae
Clade: Tracheophytes
Clade: Angiosperms
Clade: Eudicots
Clade: Asterids
Order: Gentianales
Family: Apocynaceae
Genus: Asclepias
A. fascicularis
Binomial name
Asclepias fascicularis

Asclepias fascicularis is a species of milkweed known by the common names narrowleaf milkweed and Mexican whorled milkweed. It is a perennial herb that grows in a variety of habitats.


Closeup of flowers

Asclepias fascicularis is a flowering perennial herb sending up many thin, erect stems and bearing distinctive long pointed leaves which are very narrow and often whorled about the stem, giving the plant its common names.[2][3]

It blooms in clusters of lavender, pale pink, purple, white, to greenish shades of flowers.[3] They have five reflexed lobes that extend down away from the blossom. The flowers are 4–5 mm (0.16–0.20 in) and pedicels are 6–10 mm (0.2–0.4 in) in size.[4]

The fruit pods are the smooth milkweed type, which split open to spill seeds along with plentiful silky hairs. They bloom from late spring to late summer.

Distribution and habitat[edit]

The plant is a common perennial in the Western United States and Baja California.[5] It is found in numerous habitats, including deserts, chaparral and woodlands, and montane locales below 7,000 feet (2,100 m).[3]


Monarch butterflies[edit]

Asclepias fascicularis is a specific monarch butterfly food and habitat plant. However, it provides negligible cardenolide content, a set of protective chemicals that reduce the virulence of the OE parasite and bird predation.[citation needed]


Asclepias fascicularis is cultivated by specialty nurseries as an ornamental plant. It is used in butterfly and wildlife gardens, and in native plant and drought tolerant gardens and natural landscaping projects.[3]


  1. ^ "NatureServe Explorer - Asclepias fascicularis". NatureServe Explorer Asclepias fascicularis. NatureServe. 2022-05-30. Retrieved 30 May 2022.
  2. ^ Thomas J. Rosatti & Carol A. Hoffman 2013, Asclepias fascicularis, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, Revision 1, doi:10.5091/plecevo.2013.734, accessed on January 02, 2022.
  3. ^ a b c d "Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center - The University of Texas at Austin". Retrieved 2022-01-03.
  4. ^ "Asclepias fascicularis | Bring Back The Monarchs". Retrieved 2021-10-29.
  5. ^ "USDA Plants Database". The PLANTS Database. National Plant Data Team. Greensboro, NC USA: United States Department of Agriculture, Natural Resources Conservation Service. Asclepias fascicularis Decne. (Mexican whorled milkweed). Archived from the original on 2021-07-05. Retrieved 2022-01-03.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: others (link)

External links[edit]