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Asclepias subulata

Desert Milkweed

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Desert milkweed makes a strong architectural statement. Groups of slim, gray-green branches rise 3’ tall and flower with cream-colored blooms. Important larval food plant for both Queens and Monarchs. Plant among rocks along a simulated arroyo, or along any pathway with a desert plant palette.

Benefits

A vital larval food source for Queens and Monarchs
Strong nectar source for many native insects
Unique form makes it a landscape standout
Very drought tolerant
Tolerates full sun and reflective heat
Tarantula hawks love the nectar

Homeowner Growing and Maintenance Tips

There is normally no pruning to be done, but every few years the plant may be cut to the ground in late winter to renew itself. Fertilizing is not necessary. Use as an accent plant, in the swimming pool area, butterfly garden, cactus or native plant garden. 


Height
3-4 Feet

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Spread
3-4 Feet

USDA Hardiness Zone 9-11

Native Trivia

Butterflies use their tarsi or "feet" as taste receptors. When they contact sweet liquids such as nectar butterflies extend their proboscis to eat the nectar sensed by the taste receptors.

Characteristics & Attributes

Plan Sub Group
Medium to Tall Perennials
Exposure
Filtered Shade
Sun
Soil Moisture Preference
Average
Dry
Attracts Wildlife
Butterflies
Hummingbirds
Bloom Time
Fall
Late Spring / Early Summer
Late Summer
Summer
Habitat Collection
Butterfly
Native Habitat
Desert
Foliage Color
Gray-green
Uses
Accent
Border
Container
Drought tolerant
Naturalizes
Rock garden
Specimen
Native to
Arizona
California
Nevada