Lovely Butterfly Milkweed Garden Plants
Butterfly milkweeds are perennial wildflowers that are popular garden plants because it attracts butterflies. The milkweed garden plants are perennial plants that grows from deep rhizomes. Its main stem is mostly solitary, that branches out to many sturdy, rounded, hairy stems. It is generally five to six feet tall, although many new cultivated varieties are shorter in height and more branching. The leaves are simple, broad, and ovate in shape with a reddish stripe along the midrib, and sparsely hairy above, and densely hairy on the underside. The flowers bloom in late summer, and are tiny and grow in clusters of 20 – 100 per pod. Each flower has five petals, with an erect lobe that stands up. The flowers come in an array of pleasing colors; white, purple, red, pink, orange and yellow. The flowers exude a very heady aroma.
Milkweed garden plants are non-fussy in nature. They are also invasive in nature, so their growth needs to be controlled. As they develop rhizomes, one can mow them down completely during winters. Mowing them down, anywhere from late spring to early summer, will result in no-show of flowers. If one has planted them in containers, move them indoors during winters as they are not frost tolerant. They do well with minimum fertilizing and water. As the plant contains milk sap, excess of fertilizer and water will set rot in them. Many pests inflict them, like aphids, true bug, etc. Using pesticide often gets rid of them.