Asclepias verticillata (Whorled Milkweed)
Monarch Butterflies are fully and exclusively dependent upon milkweeds for laying eggs and for larva food source and they can nectar. These plants were once so plentiful they were literally called weeds because they were problematic in agricultural fields. However, that's no longer the case with regular Glyphosate treatments to agricultural fields wiping out all "weeds". With fragmentation, global climate change, pollution, and other threats this is a major problem for Monarch butterflies that heavily depend upon the milkweed and other native plants.Monarch's need milkweeds, but also nectar sources that many native flowers provide. Help keep these going! Please consider your part in this planet, plant Monarch food sources including milkweed and other native plants.
Asclepias verticillata (Whorled Milkweed) can be easily overlooked in a dense prairie, but it really comes alive in mass plantings. The grass-like leaves add excellent texture before and after flowering. The creamy green/white flower really put on a show in July and August. This shorter milkweed is great for landscaping and because it overwinters well in pots can be a patio or rooftop deck butterfly paradise.
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Photo By George F Mayfield [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons