Asclepias purpurascens

Purple Milkweed

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Item #: 12659

Zones: 3a to 9b

Dormancy: Winter

Height: 24" tall

Culture: Sun

Origin: United States

Pot Size: 3.5" pot (24 fl. oz/0.7 L)

Native from Canada south to Louisiana, with the heaviest concentration in Missouri, Asclepias purpurascens is one of those great North American native plants that should be grown in all sunny gardens. The 2' tall green stems emerge from dormancy, clothed in 6" long x 3" wide dark green leaves, on opposite sides of the stem. Starting for us in mid-May, the terminal and upper leaf axils are home to dozens of 2-3" wide spheres, each composed of fascinating rosy-purple, hoya-like flowers. Asclepias purpurascens spreads a tiny bit, but nothing like the weedy Asclepias syriaca, which we long ago banished from our gardens. Asclepias purpurascens is a favorite of a large number of bees, butterflies, skippers, and even ruby-throated hummingbirds. Both flowers and shoots of Asclepias purpurascens can be eaten by humans if cooked. Paper can be made from the fiber in the stems, and chewing gum and wart remover from the white latex sap. Sounds like a great value to us!