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saturniidaebreeder

Milkweed: your idea

saturniidaebreeder
15 years ago

Hence the name milkWEED, do you believe that milkweed is an invasive and unwanted plant or something to plant? Im just doing a quick "survey on peoples oppinions. I myself want milkweed... how about you? This is the butterfly forum so im predicting that milkweed is wanted, but please state your real oppinion, not everybody wants to raise monarchs, there are other BFs to, maybe youd rather have some parsley for black swallowtails! Dont be shy!

Please just list if you want milkweed or dont, and if you have milkweed or not. So far these are the standings(so far only me):

Want.....Dont want.....Have......dont have

1.................................1

(1 point for: HAVE & WANT)

BTW: I saw my first Summer and Spring azures today! Ill put some pictures later.

S.B.

Comments (43)

  • tdr4
    15 years ago

    I have lots of milk weed and dig up every little plant to give away.

  • brandymulvaine
    15 years ago

    I have swamp(A.incarnata),
    common(A.syriaca),
    spider(A.virdis),
    tropical(A. curassavica)
    butterfly weed yellow and orange(A. tuberosa-hello yellow)so far.
    Now on my WANTED list I have tons still to get.....

    I think the biggest complaint with the milkweed is with A. syriaca, because the stupid cows(and stupider sheep!) eat it and get sick or die. Isn't that how we get our dog food?-B

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  • susanlynne48
    15 years ago

    Well, I think I'm going to have to order more A. purpurescens again. The milkweed bugs have eaten the foliage on both! I have nothing but stems left. I guess I should have potted them up for awhile before putting them in the garden - well, actually I did, but only for a couple of weeks.

    I have:

    A. curassavica
    A. incarnata
    A. incarnata 'Ice Ballet'
    Physocarpa (Family Jewels)
    A. syriaca
    Cynanchum laeve (sand vine)

    I would like to have:

    A. viridis
    A. speciosa

    The only pests I have on it are the dratted milkweed bugs, milkweed beetles, and orange aphids. Oh, and the patrolling wasps, and the "lying-in-wait" praying mantids, and spiders for which caterpillars are meals.

    I am wondering if the Monarchs will lay eggs on the syriaca and if the cats will be able to consume it. The leaves are very tough on mine. Anyone else have the same concerns?

    Susan

  • tdogmom
    15 years ago

    I love Milkweed.

  • Butterflyer1966
    15 years ago

    Hey everyone,
    I have some, but would love to have much more..lol
    Butterfly-Greetings
    Susanne(SUE)

  • wildflowerchris
    15 years ago

    i have 3 milkweed plants: 1 tropical milkweed( A. curassavica), and 2 Swamp milkweed (A.incarnata).

    i love them both.

    My incarnata plants are near the small lake. there are two monarchs hanging out by them. its neat watching them fly around the back yard and with the lake in the background.

    i don't know why anyone wouldn't want milkweeds...

    -chris

  • meanma
    15 years ago

    I got my first milkweed last week. Five bucks a plant and all it said was milkweed. I also bought butterfly bush and cone flower. I am just geeting into butterflies, I love blue birds.
    Betty

  • saturniidaebreeder
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    well, Wanted and Have is winning so far...
    7 to 1 for want, and everyone has milkweed, just one of them are not wanted, but they are given away and put to good use!
    S.B.

  • tdr4
    15 years ago

    You misunderstood, I love milkweeds. I have 21 large plants growing along my privacy fence. I have 5 large plants in pots, also. I have been digging up little plants because I do not have room for them. I pot them and give them away. I also collect the seeds and give away. I use the seeds in my class for my first graders to plant. I ordered my first milkweed online July 2005. I had them in large pots and brought them inside when Hurricane Katrina hit. In the fall of 2006 the monarchs ate every leave on 9 large plants so I plant plenty. I only have the tropical and have one tiny common milkweed. I tried growing swamp from seeds but was not successful. I want more of other kinds of milkweed plants.

  • tracey_nj6
    15 years ago

    I have:
    A. incarnata
    A. incarnata "Cinderella"
    A. curassavica "Blood Red", "Silky Red", "Silky Gold"
    A. tuberosa, orange
    A. tuberosa, "Gay Butterflies"
    A. syriaca
    Two unknown milkweed vines

    I want:
    Gomprocarpus, Hairy Balls. I grew last year, but didn't produce seed fast enough for me to harvest :(
    A. purpurescens, because I keep seeing susanlynne48 talking about it ;)
    Actually, I want every variety that I haven't already tried. I'd love to just try it once.

    I don't want:
    A. syriaca ... the monarchs simply don't prefer it in my garden, and it unwantingly spreads.

    I was growing A. tuberosa way before I started rearing butterflies. They're simply beautiful plants. I admit, I hate the aphids, and almost yanked out my milkweeds because of a horrendous invasion one year. I'm also pretty diligent about harvesting the seed and try my best to get as many as possible, to avoid it spreading out of control, or spreading to someone that doesn't want it...

  • bernergrrl
    15 years ago

    I have lots o'milkweed; I think it's a beautiful plant and should be desirable in most gardens (I'm talking the a. incarnata varieties, a, purpurescens, a. curassivica and a.tuberosa). I ordered a bunch more seeds, but they are disappointing the heckout of me.

    This is how badly I wanted more milkweed:

    I ordered the seeds, changed their water every twelve hourse for 36 hours. Cold-stratified some kinds and sowed the others--weeks and weeks and cold, and I have one tiny little seedling. I should try to put them back in the fridge, but there's no room.

    I love, love, love milkweed.

  • hope3
    15 years ago

    I have close to 100 milkweed plants and need more. Most of them are the tropical milkweed and most are in pots so I can move them about depending on what stage they are in and where they are needed. Generally I just let the wind blow the seeds where ever. I think we need them where ever they will grow. I wash my plants about every 2 or 3 weeks to get the aphids off and am constantly picking the little red monsters off. They haven't been too hard to keep under control so far.
    Hope

  • susanlynne48
    15 years ago

    Hope - which little red monsters? The milkweed bugs, beetles, and/or aphids, or all of the above? Teehee!

    I found my best seeds were those I exchanged with others on the forum a couple of years ago or that were given to me from established plants grown by people on this forum. The ones I ordered from seed companies don't seem to germinate well at all, or didn't for me.

    Susan

  • saturniidaebreeder
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    Sorry tdr4, sounded like you dig them up and give them away to be no part of them... guess everyone loves Milkweed!
    bernergrrl and susanlynne48- I never really had any problems from seeds I bought, actually ones I planted a few weeks ago had a 80-90% germination total, almost all of them! I didnt cold stratify any of them, just threw in a small hole and they popped up! I ordered the seeds a few months ago, they were sitting on a table and then I just put them in. I got my seeds from:

    Northern Milkweed- Live Monarch Foundation (they also sell cuttings!): http://www.livemonarch.com/

    Tropical Milkweed- Educational Science: http://educationalscience.com/

    Good Luck, Hopefully if my plants will grow fast enough and produce seeds, my neighborhood is going to be infested!Good luck to this "Monarch Season". Anyone seen any Monarchs yet, still havent seen any here in New York.
    S.B.

  • terrene
    15 years ago

    I love Asclepias! They are beautiful native plants besides being Monarch host plants. I've got -

    A. incarnata 'Ice Ballet'
    A. incarnata
    A. tuberosa 'Gay Butterflies'
    A. tuberosa 'Hello Yellow'

    And I winter-sowed this year -

    A. purpurascens
    A. variegata
    A. syriaca
    A. incarnata (seeds are from a darker pink plant)
    A. curassavica
    Cynanchum laeve

    I got excellent germination on all but the A. variegata. From that seed I only got ONE healthy seedling - but at least there's one!

    The only other species I want is A. verticillata. Then I will have pretty much all species native to the Northeastern US.

    A. syriaca is a common wildflower around here and it is not well-behaved enough to grow in the garden, so I'm putting it out back in a wildflower/meadow area, where it can spread hither and yon if it wants to. That one is worth growing for the fragrance alone.

  • onafixedincome
    15 years ago

    I have A. speciosa only thus far; for some reason the tropical just doesnt' seem to want to grow. :(

    Hey CalSherry, any chance I can get some more seed to play with?

    Susanlynne, my speciosa is going berserk this year with flowers and SCENT!! to die for--want me to save you some seeds? I'm planning on trying to spin the fluff, so will be saving seeds by default....

    Here is a link that might be useful: KickTail butterfly Book--Central CA

  • hope3
    15 years ago

    Susan, my milkweed has the aphids (yellow-orange) and milkweed bugs. Haven't seen any beetles.
    Hope

  • tdr4
    15 years ago

    Onafixedincome, I have collected a little bit of tropical seeds this past week. I would be glad to send you some.

  • MissSherry
    15 years ago

    I love milkweed, I only wish I could grow a perennial type that the monarchs would use, other than cynanchum laeve - a vine in the MW family - which isn't the top of the line as far as monarch food goes, but they will use it.
    I've recently planted some a. linaria seeds, and the small plants are growing fairly slowly in my garden. I'm hoping that this plant will come back in the spring and be attractive to monarchs to lay eggs on. I've also planted some a. perennis in the wetter parts of my property, but I haven't seen any seedlings yet - they may take a year to come up.
    I can grow a. curassavica, but the MW bugs and aphids always devour the plants, and they don't come back in the spring. There is a type that grows on my property, a. longifolia, but the monarchs won't use it.
    Sherry

  • susanlynne48
    15 years ago

    Sherry, I'm surprised that they don't come back from seed in your zone. Course I always schmoo the bugs and beetles. I don't know what is native in your state either. I think incarnata is one of the easiest to grow, with the exception of A. syriaca. I will try to cut the pods off this one, and pull up any suckers.

    My gomphocarpus is not looking too good after the raging storm we had 2 days ago. It really took a pounding. I may have to stake it. It's getting plenty of sun, but the stems appear weaker on it than the other milkweeds I have.

    Joe Pye Weed took a dive - down to the ground. When we have high straight winds, they really cannot tolerate it. I usually stake it, but didn't get around to it this year.

    Incarnata could also tolerate the wetter parts of your property, MissSherry.

    Hope, haven't seen the aphids.......yet! LOL! But, I'm sure they will be here soon. Just can't grow milkweed without them appearing, it seems.

    Terrene, my only issue with A. verticillata is that the foliage is like tiny little wands - long, but very tiny, not much food for a Monarch. When I had it, the Monarchs would eat it (didn't take long), and move to the other milkweeds very quickly, for more substantial food.

    Isn't viridis a native in your state, too? It's a gorgeous milkweed as well.

    Onafixedincome - Oooooo, I would love to have A. speciosa. Native here in Oklahoma as well. I think I'm gonna try to winter sow it. My A. curassavicas are still small (about 2-4" tall). We've had such a cool spring with a last frost date in early May (used to being in early April). So, they've been held at bay for longer than usual. In your zone, though, I would think they would be up and going gangbusters by now. Maybe CalSherry has an answer for you. These are one of the milkweeds that I fertilize well with chicken manure. They really benefit from it.

    Susan

  • brandymulvaine
    15 years ago

    onafixedincome,
    Could I get some A. speciosa seed from you also? I have A. Incarnata to trade(some from last year or wait 'til this fall).
    Misssherry,
    I still have some A. incarnata from last year if you want to give it a try, stick them in wet peat pellets, put the whole tray in the 'fridge for a couple of months(to fake a winter)then in a bright,indirect,warm place 'til they sprout!
    -B

  • onafixedincome
    15 years ago

    I'll post when I have seed available, folks... :) Glad to trade at that time (to make sure my 'account' is good, if you will).

    I don't have any of the other species, although I'd adore to.....Mind you, I have all this lovely milkweed and not a Monarch in sight....ROFL!

  • tdr4
    15 years ago

    Ms Sherry, my milkweed comes back(most of it). Its the seeds that I missed that are sprouting that I dig up. I will keep some in pots and pull them in my garage during the winter. The first year I got in to butterfly gardening, it seems that we had some monarchs in the spring. I saved some plants in my garage just for them and never saw a one this year.

  • MissSherry
    15 years ago

    My a. curassavica MW doesn't come back, Susan, but seedlings of it have popped up in the spring close to where the original plant grew, so, apparently the seeds can tolerate my winters.
    I planted some a. incarnata in some wet spots, and some of it has returned, it's just not enough to feed even one voracious monarch cat, so I need more.
    Brandymulvaine, I'll check my seeds and see if I have any a. incarnata left. If I don't, I'll take some of yours - that's a good idea about faking a winter by putting the peat pots in the fridge.
    I saw a monarch earlier this spring, tdr4, before I had any MW at all, but haven't seen any since. :(
    Sherry

  • susanlynne48
    15 years ago

    Year b4 last I wintersowed my milkweed seeds. After they had about 2-3 true leaves, I potted them up into 4" pots, and then into the ground about a month later. You should see my humongous A. incarnata now. One of them is now 4' tall and about 3' wide and this is only its second year!

    Yeah, I didn't mean my curasssavica plants come back - they reseed. Too cold for them to winter over here.

    I wonder how long milkweed seed remains viable????? I have some incarnata and incarnata 'Ice Ballet' still left.

    Susan

  • terrene
    15 years ago

    Susanlynne, it sounds like your incarnata is growing very well for a 2nd year plant. Are they in a wet location? Mine grow well, considering it's one of those wetland plants that I'm growing in average garden conditions, and we've had a very dry Spring. But my 2nd year plants are only 1 foot tall. I would think A. incarnata would grow just about anywhere in the US, it has one of the largest native ranges of all species.

    A. viridis is not native to northeastern US - but after perusing the USDA plants database, A. amplexicaulis, A. viridiflora, and A. exaltata are native here too. That's great, a few more species to try to find and grow - I have a bit of a collector mentality with Milkweed, it's not just for the butterflies. :)

    A. asperula has particularly beautiful interesting flowers IMO, but that is a southwest US native, and who knows if it would grow in this climate or survive the winter.

  • aeiger
    15 years ago

    I have lots of milkweed plants, unknown variety bought seeds that said "butterfly host". This is the first year. I also have clumps of parsley all over the yard. I rarely see Monarchs but my butterfly bushes have lots of black and also yellow swallowtails. Lots of Skippers too. Also the everpresent cabbage b'fly whites and yellows. /Abi

  • saturniidaebreeder
    Original Author
    15 years ago

    Good luck with Monarchs this year, everyone. Sounds like everbodys anticipating their arrival, none here yet.
    S.B.

  • Daniel Sanchez
    15 years ago

    I LOVE Milkweeds/Asclepias!!! Right now I have these species:

    Showy
    Butterflyweed
    Hellow Yellow
    Gay Butterflies
    Purple
    Swamp
    Ice Ballet
    Family Jewels
    Hall's
    Green Comet
    Pineland
    Poke
    Common
    Pallid
    Spider
    Red-Ring
    Arizona
    Pineneedle
    Caribbean
    Indian
    Narrowleaf
    Davis Showy
    Sullivant's
    Whorled
    Clasping
    a ? Milkvine


    and I may get Asclepias Rubra, Dwarf Milkweed, Texas Milkweed, and more! These are just seed that I am planting this year.

  • ladobe
    15 years ago

    You can put me down as: don't have - don't want.

    There are so many different species of milkweed that grow wild on the desert around here, in disturbed areas along roads, washes, in draws, etc that there really is no need to grow it on my property. I'm sure there is at least a couple of species growing wild in the desert parkways and along the golf courses that flow through my neighborhood. FWIW, none of the folks I used to do Leps with here in the desert southwest and mountain west grew it intentionally in their yards. So I'd say that here at least it is considered a weed by folks who don't do Lepidoptera, and even those that do the leps rely on wild plants for rearing. The most common species encountered growing wild in this large area is Asclepias speciosa, with A. subverticillata close behind.

  • Daniel Sanchez
    15 years ago

    ladobe, do you have seeds of A.Subverticillata?

  • ladobe
    15 years ago

    Danny,
    Why would I have seeds of any species of Asclepias (or any other plant for that matter) that I do not grow on my property?

  • Daniel Sanchez
    15 years ago

    I just thought that you may have had some. Sorry.

  • mmqchdygg
    15 years ago

    Want & Have

    I don't know WHAT I grew this year, but it was FABULOUS- a 'red' variety that was HUGE- probably topped out at 48-60" and was beautiful...lemme see if I have a pic...if anyone knows which variety this is, and what it's habit is (like if it's a biennial and probably keeled this season) that would be good.

    Front to back in the photo (but L-R if you were standing in the grass looking at this bed) There's (plain weeds), the Yarrow, Phlox "Sandra" (isn't that FABULOUS color?!), then the Milkweed, then Mondarda. Behind the milkweed is the purple phlox.
    It wasn't in bloom quite yet; this photo was taken on July 20. Thanks for the help!

    {{gwi:199354}}

  • Daniel Sanchez
    15 years ago

    That picture did not go through. Can you post another picture?

  • sherrie_kay
    15 years ago

    That flowerbed is beautiful!!! I have no idea what your red-flowered plant is - but I would love to transplant your whole flowerbed to MY yard! :-)

  • Daniel Sanchez
    15 years ago

    I think the MIlkweed with the pink flowers is Swamp Milkweed. The red...I do not know.

  • ladobe
    15 years ago

    "I just thought that you may have had some. Sorry."

    No sorry needed Danny. Your question if I had seeds just did't make sense right behind my post that said I don't have any and didn't want any Asclepias.

  • Daniel Sanchez
    15 years ago

    oh. I guess I did not read that. do you know of any sources near you that have seeds of A.Subverticillata and other Milkweeds that grow in your area? I am looking for that Milkweed. If not that is okay. :-)

  • mmqchdygg
    15 years ago

    Ok, you're right; I don't think it was red. The swamp milkweed pix all look right, and the one at Dave's Garden with the seed pods is exactly it. Thanks!

    Show & Tell time:
    Thank you, Sherrie; this was pure luck that this bed turned out the way it did; I somehow ended up tossing all my 'vigorous, comma, things that are pink" into this bed, and it worked. I'm constantly trying to figure out what to plant in the 'back' of this bed, as the whole thing is on a slope and surrounds a flagpole, and I like to put annuals on the other side of it. Here's some shots of the area. I dug it all out in 2006, and expanded it in 2007:

    Feb 4, 2006- this part of the bed is planted in the composted area. The sandy area around the flagpole was composted over in spring of 2007...(I don't think I planted it out in 06) and that's where I plant the shorter annuals:

    {{gwi:368486}}

    2007 saw a major expansion of the whole area out around that shrub on the right, and another shrub on the left. Here's a shot from the roof: {{gwi:347119}}
    {{gwi:347120}}
    {{gwi:493114}}

    By July 28 of '07 it wasn't looking too shabby! {{gwi:4890}}

    2008 was a 'weedy-out-of-control' gardening season for me, and I was not thrilled with the 'jungle' look of my gardens last year. Mostly because I didn't take the time & effort to tend to them like they should have been, and I got this 'jungle' from my livingroom window. Plus, I went "sunflower crazy" and they towered over everything in the yard, making everything just too darned overgrown looking. the B&Bs were happy, but I'm going to shorten things up a bit this year: {{gwi:493118}}

    {{gwi:493120}}

    {{gwi:193881}}

  • susanlynne48
    15 years ago

    Wow! So many species of milkweed you are growing! I am amazed and astounded!

    I only have A. curassavica, Gomphocarpus (Swan Milkweed), A. incarnata, A. Syriaca, and milkweed vine (Cynanchum laeve).

    Mmqchdygg - your garden is lovely! My yard is too small (unfortunately) for a lot of milkweed plants, having devoted other host plants such as pipevine, false nettle, sennas, and passion vines to the butterfly garden as well.

    You guys rock!!

    Susan

  • Daniel Sanchez
    15 years ago

    Those are great pictures!

  • Daniel Sanchez
    15 years ago

    If anyone has any wild Milkweeds growing everywhere that you do not want I want them. Even if they are small plants or bare roots. I am interested in them because I have an acre backyard and am interested in Milkweeds. I am interested in all the wild ones but not Asclepias Curassavica. I already have that one.

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