What is the difference between tropical milkweed and native milkweed?
Tropical milkweed (Asclepias curassavica) is a non-native milkweed that has exploded in popularity in response to the demand for milkweed. When native milkweeds die back after blooming, the parasite dies along with them so that each summer’s monarch population feeds on fresh, parasite-free foliage.
How do I identify a tropical milkweed?
Tropical Milkweed (Asclepias curassavica)
- Flowers with orange corona and red corolla.
- Produces milky sap when leaves/stem broken.
- Leaves narrow and pointed.
- Prefers moist soils and thrives in disturbed areas (but is typically found in gardens)
Do monarchs like tropical milkweed?
Like many milkweeds, Tropical Milkweed is a food plant for Monarch caterpillars. Queen caterpillars, which are found in the southern states, particularly Florida, southern costal areas, Texas, and the southwest, will use Tropical Milkweed as a food source.
Which milkweed is invasive?
A few tips for purchasing and planting milkweed Common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) is the source of the plant’s bad reputation—it’s quite invasive.
Will monarchs eat all types of milkweed?
Although Monarchs have preferences of some varieties over others, there are many different species of milkweed plants that Monarch caterpillars will gladly gobble up.
Is tropical milkweed killing Monarch butterflies?
Tropical milkweed is “trapping the butterflies” in these new winter breeding sites, says Lincoln Brower, a monarch biologist at Sweet Briar College in Virginia. But it turns out that year-round tropical milkweed presents an even more direct threat to the butterflies.
Is showy milkweed good for monarchs?
Asclepias speciosa is commonly known as Showy Milkweed and rightly so. The flowers look like an explosion of stars and are fragrant. Butterflies find them attractive for nectar and the Monarch caterpillars enjoy munching the leaves. It is a major host plant of the Monarch butterflies in the Western part of the US.
Which milkweed is bad for monarchs?
This is the reason Tropical milkweed (Asclepias curassavica), an introduced species native to Mexico, is developing a bad reputation among monarch biologists and conservation organizations. It can delay the butterflies’ instinctual fall migration through North Texas to the point of destruction.
Will monarch caterpillars eat anything besides milkweed?
Actually, no. Monarch caterpillars do only eat plants in the Milkweed family (Asclepias spp), so if we want to help them out in our wildlife gardens, we still need to add these plants to our gardens. Monarch caterpillars do not feed on tomato plants, despite what may seem like circumstantial evidence to the contrary.
What are the benefits of milkweed?
• Lungs — Milkweed’s reputation largely lies in its ability to help with lung conditions. It may help relax the bronchioles, reduce spasms and liquefy the mucus in the lungs. As such, it’s used to help various breathing conditions such as asthma, bronchitis, pleurisy and tuberculosis.
Is milkweed native to Georgia?
How to help the Butterflies and their Migration. It’s an easy and beautiful solution to the problem. For Georgia, there are two important native milkweed plants (planting non-native milkweed may actually harm the Monarch Butterfly ): Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa) This milkweed is distinctive for its orange color.
What is the relationship between monarch butterflies and milkweed?
There is a symbiotic relationship between the native milkweed plants and the monarch. The monarch butterflies enjoy the nectar from the flowers and help pollinate the plants. The successful pollination allows the milkweed to thrive and thus provide more nurseries for the crucial ‘fourth generation’ of monarchs.
Is milkweed a fruit?
Follicle (fruit) A milkweed follicle releasing its seeds. In botany, a follicle is a dry unilocular fruit formed from one carpel, containing two or more seeds. It is usually defined as dehiscing by a suture in order to release seeds, for example in Consolida (some of the larkspurs), peony and milkweed ( Asclepias ).