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growing butterfly weed from seed

Growing butterfly weed from seed

Read our article about Aphids on Milkweed

This beautiful, blazing native plant relative of milkweed family, attracts butterflies, especially Monarch butterflies.

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There’s no need to wait for plants to establish themselves before reaping the benefits.

How To Take Care Of A Weed Plant

Even though the Asclepias plant does reproduce fairly readily, it is never a good idea to disrupt it.

Another notable plant from the same family is the tropical milkweed (Asclepias Curassavica).

In the wild, you find it on the prairie, growing in depleted pasture soil, along roadsides and on the verge of very dry forests. When you come across butterfly weed in the wild, you should leave it alone.

Is Butterfly Weed Hard to Grow?

Bright orange butterfly weed cuts a striking figure in the garden and it does not have milky sap like other members of its family.

Because butterfly weed likes poor soil, you needn’t worry much about feeding it.

Growing butterfly weed from seed

No fertilizer is required and may even harm the plant.

What is a butterfly weed? Butterfly weed plants (Asclepias tuberosa) are trouble-free North American natives that produce umbels of bright orange, yellow, or red blooms all summer long. Butterfly weed is appropriately named, as the nectar and pollen rich flowers attract hummingbirds and hordes of butterflies, bees, and other beneficial insects throughout the blooming season. Do you want to know more about how to grow butterfly weed? Read on.

Butterfly weed plants are easy to grow by seed, but may not produce blooms for two or three years. Once established, butterfly weed is drought tolerant and blooms dependably from year to year. Also, keep in mind that butterfly weed has long, sturdy roots that make transplantation very difficult, so locate the plant in its permanent place in the garden.

Butterfly weed grows wild in a variety of environments, including open woods, prairies, dry fields, meadows, and along roadsides. In the garden, butterfly weed looks great in wildflower meadows, borders, rock gardens, or mass plantings.

How to Grow Butterfly Weed

Butterfly weed plants are milkweed cousins with tall, clumping perennials that reach heights of 12 to 36 inches (31-91 cm.). The blooms appear atop fuzzy, green stems, which are adorned by attractive, lance-shaped leaves. Butterfly weed plants spread by way of seeds, which are released from large pods in early autumn.

Growing butterfly weed requires very little effort. The plant, suitable for growing in USDA plant hardiness zones 3 through 9, thrives in bright sunlight and poor, dry, sandy, or gravelly soil with a slightly acidic or neutral pH.

Keep the soil moist until the plant is established and showing new growth. Thereafter, water only occasionally, as butterfly weed plants prefer dry soil. Trim old growth every spring to keep them neat and healthy.

Butterfly Weed Characteristics

Mealybugs and aphids may cause problems during the blooming season, but both are easily controlled by regular applications of insecticidal soap or horticultural oil.