Butterfly Milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa) Quick Facts:
Host plant to Monarch and nectar plant to a variety of butterflies
Native to most of US (except Northwest)
Hardy in zones 4-9
Full sun, tolerates partial shade
Dry to medium moisture, needs good drainage
Bright orange flowers bloom throughout summer
1-2 feet tall
Space plants 18″ apart
Butterfly Weed Plants (Asclepias tuberosa)
Our Butterfly Milkweed plants come in a 3.5 inch pot and are grown to be safe for the many nectaring butterflies that are attracted to this plant, as well as the Monarch caterpillars.
Butterfly weed plants are not a weed at all. In fact it is a very well behaved plant in the butterfly garden. It will spread in clumps but unlike some milkweeds it is not aggressive through underground rhizomes.
The brilliant orange flowers attract many different species of butterflies. In our garden, the Swallowtail butterflies seem to really love this plant.
Asclepias tuberosa is native, perennial milkweed and you can expect it to die back in the fall and return each spring. Butterfly weed is drought tolerant and tough.
Monarch butterflies lay eggs on this milkweed to feed their caterpillars. Although this is not one of their top choices they gladly use it if it is the only milkweed planted. I have used it as a back-up if I run out of other types of milkweed for the caterpillars. Even though it is not their favorite I will always grow Butterfly Milkweed for its reliability, the beautiful flowers, and its ability to attract so many other butterflies!