Image for Butterfly Milkweed

Butterfly Milkweed

Scientific name

Asclepias tuberosa


Butterfly Milkweed is a very attractive perennial wildflower that typically grows about 0.5 m tall. This plant may also be known by the common name Showy Milkweed. The leaves are green coloured, alternately arranged, narrow and lance-shaped, and have entire margins. The flowers are showy, fragrant, bright orange coloured, have five tiny petals, appear in clusters of 8-25, and bloom between June and August. Butterfly Milkweed is easy to grow and is low maintenance. This wildflower spreads well and can be used to naturalize un-vegetated areas. The roots can be useful for controlling erosion and stabilizing shorelines. The flowers are beneficial to pollinator species, like bees and butterflies. It is also a larval host for caterpillars of the endangered Monarch Butterfly, thus planting this species where possible can help protect this at risk species.

Planting conditions

Butterfly Milkweed grows best in dry to normal conditions with full or partial sun exposure. It prefers well-drained sandy or loam soil types. It can tolerate drought and dry soil but young plants should be watered occasionally until established. This wildflower can be naturally found in open forests, forest edges, in meadows and fields, and along sandy shorelines slopes.


  • Plant height:
    • Max 1.5m
    • Max 2m
    • Max 3m
    • Any
  • Moisture level:
    • Dry
    • Normal
    • Drought Tolerant
  • Light conditions:
    • Full sun
    • Partial sun
  • Soil type:
    • Sandy
    • Loamy
    • Rocky
  • pH:
    • Acidic
    • Normal
  • Depth:
    • Wildflower
  • Eco Zone:
    • 6a
    • 6b
    • 7a
  • Plant type:
    • Wildflower
  • Height:
    • 0.5 m
  • Spread:
    • 0.5 m