Photo Credit
Photo courtesy of Jessica Helmbold, Patuxent NWR.

Common milkweed

Scientific name
Asclepias syriaca
Plant Family
Plant Group
Common milkweed is the host plant for the monarch butterfly life cycle. The milky sap or latex inside this plant, eaten by monarch caterpillars, is what makes the animal toxic to predators. This tall wildflower produces a globe of unique looking soft pink flowers.
Identification Hints

Common milkweed is the host plant for the monarch butterfly life cycle. The milky sap or latex inside this plant, eaten by monarch caterpillars, is what makes the animal toxic to predators. This tall wildflower produces a globe of unique looking soft pink flowers.

Did You Know?

Fibers pulled from the dead stems of Common milkweed can be used to create cord and rope. Many Native American tribes used parts of the milkweed plant to treat ailments. However, ingesting any part of Common milkweed can be toxic if not prepared properly.

States
AL, AR, CT, DE, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, VA, VT, WI, WV