Notable Features: This Milkweed appears generally similar to common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) but is less aggressive, has slightly smaller flowers. Due to its less aggressive nature, this is a great milkweed for small gardens. Visited by hummingbirds and a wide variety of bees and butterflies, including monarchs! Flowers are beautifully fragrant. After just a few years the taproot will extend very deep, protecting the plant in times of drought, but also making it difficult to move so choose your spot wisely.
Attracts: Various insects visit the flowers for nectar, including bumblebees, cuckoo bees (Epeolus spp.), leaf-cutting bees (Megachile spp.), Halictid bees (including green metallic bees), Halictid cuckoo bees (Sphecodes spp.), sand wasps (Bembix spp.), Sphecid wasps, Ichneumonid wasps, thick-headed flies (Conopidae), Tachinid flies, flesh flies (Sarcophagidae), butterflies, skippers, moths, and ants. The Ruby-throated Hummingbird also visits the flowers for nectar. Among the various visitors, bumblebees and other long-tongued bees are the most effective in cross-pollinating the flowers. Other insects feed on the roots, stems, leaves, flowers, and seedpods of Prairie Milkweed and other milkweeds. The larvae of one species, the Milkweed Leaf-miner Fly (Liriomyza asclepiadis), tunnels through the leaves of Prairie Milkweed. Other insects that feed on milkweeds include long-horned beetles (Tetraopes spp.), the Swamp Milkweed Leaf Beetle (Labidomera clivicollis), the Milkweed Stem Weevil (Rhyssomatus lineaticollis), the Small Milkweed Bug (Lygaeus kalmii), the Large Milkweed Bug (Oncopeltus fasciatus), the Oleander Aphid (Aphis nerii) and other aphids, caterpillars of a moth, the Delicate Cycnia (Cycnia tenera), and caterpillars of the Monarch butterfly (Danaus plexippus).
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