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Asclepias tuberosa/Butterfly Weed

Asclepias tuberosa / Asclepias tuberosa
Close-up of flowers
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Close-up of flowers

Close-up of mature pods shedding seeds

Native stand of butterfly weed

Shedding seed pods

Large mass of this long-lived perennial


A selection with a more orange coloring in the flowers

Flowers and foliage

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Scientific Name: Asclepias tuberosa
Common Name: Butterfly Weed
Plant Type: Deciduous
Leaf Type: Broadleaf
Hardiness Zone: 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 Determine Your Zone
Height: 1-2 feet
Spread: 1-2 feet
Bloom time: Summer
Flower color: Orange, Red
Light Exposure: Sun
Drainage: Well drained, Moist, Dry
Rate of Growth: Moderate
Water Requirement: Low
Maintenance Level: Low
Susceptible to insects
and diseases:
Landscape Categories: Deer Resistant-Tolerant Plants
Plants that Attract Birds
Plants That Attract Butterflies
Plants That Attract Hummingbirds
Comments: Attracts butterflies, particularly the monarch. Crown rot can be a problem in wet soils. This is a native species but most often seen growing in relatively small colonies across the South. Very difficult to transplant. The large roots are tuberlike and grow relatively deep giving plants the ability to grow in dry soils. Common name derived from the fact that several species of butterflies visit the bright orange flowers and often lay eggs on the foliage. Existing colonies should be protected because populations are relatively sparse.