This milkweed is considered to be incredibly important to monarch butterflies, especially in California and other western states where it is native. Also known as Mexican whorled milkweed, it is a perfect xeric- and pollinator-garden plant with beautiful blooms that provide food and habitat for beneficial insects and many pollinators including the queen butterfly also pictured on the front of this packet. Not fussy about soil, and has high drought tolerance, though will also thrive in moist conditions. Add blooms to flower arrangements. Sap is toxic; avoid eye/skin contact and do not ingest. Perennial in USDA zones 6–10. Deer resistant.
Botanical Name: Asclepias fascicularis
Native: Western U.S. and Northern Mexico
Hardiness: Perennial in USDA zones 6–10
Plant Dimensions: 20"–40" tall, 12" wide
Variety Information: Individual white to pink or lavender, ½" flowers in clusters
Exposure: Full sun
Bloom Period: Summer
Attributes: Attracts Pollinators, Deer Resistant, Drought Tolerant
When to Sow Outside: 2 to 4 weeks before your average last frost date, or in the fall for spring germination.
When to Start Inside: 6 to 8 weeks before your average last frost date.
Days to Emerge: 14–28 Days
Seed Depth: Press into surface
Seed Spacing: A group of 3 seeds every 10"–12"
Thinning: When 3" tall, thin to 1 every 10"–12"
Special Instructions: Once this plant becomes established, it is difficult to transplant because of its deep taproot. Plant it where it will not be disturbed. Spreads readily through underground rhizomes. Plant in garden where expanding growth is desired, or growth can be controlled, or in containers. Deadheading flower clusters before pods set will prolong flowering period and prevent reseeding.
Harvesting: For longest vase life, cut flowers when 1/2-2/3 of petals are open. Sear the stem end with a flame to prevent the sap from sealing the stem. Wear gloves; milkweed sap can cause skin and eye irritation and can be toxic if ingested. Change vase water often.
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