Whorled milkweed is a lovely variety of the Asclepias Family. Moderatley tall at 1-3 feet, the clusters of prim white-green flowers sit in flat-topped clusters like an umbrella. The common name comes from the needle-like leaves that swirl or “whorl” around the upper stem.
Asclepias verticillata blooms later in the summer than most milkweeds, helpful for keeping pollinators nourished before the cooler temperatures arrive, especially our beloved Monarchs as they make their long journey South.
As attractive as this plant is to bees, butterflies, moths, and other insects, it is rather unpalatable to deer and rabbits, so plant this one around more sensitive plants as a deterrent. (Keeping in mind that buns and deer are persistent and if they are hungry enough, not much is going to stop them!)
A. verticillata grows vigorously in sunny, well-drained to dry soil locations. This may not be the best choice for a small space where you don’t want it to spread, however if you have a dry spot in the yard that grows little else, this plant may be just the ticket.
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Asclepias verticillata (Whorled milkweed)
SIZE: 1/2 quart pot type: herbaceous perennial sun needs: full sun, part sun/part shade water needs: Average to dry soil height: 2' plant spacing: 1/sq ft bloom time: July-August bloom color: white
good plant companions
Butterflyweed, black-eyed Susan, little bluestem, prairie dropseed
Species of special concern. Listed as threatened in Massachusetts deer resistant (please note that does not mean deer proof)