Sun: Full to partial
Moisture: Medium to wet
Bloom Time: June-August
Bloom Color: Soft rose
Genotype: Winona, MN (shares a Level II ecosystem, Mixed Woods Plains, with Southeastern Michigan).
Indigenous interactions: In the Great Lakes area, the Ojibwa used an infusion of the root as a strengthening bath for children, and also derived twine from the plant fibers (Moerman, 1998).
This moisture-loving perennial native milkweed creates a large, lovely compound flower with a sweet-spicy fragrance. Very attractive to a wide range of pollinators, including bumblebees, other native bees, and Monarch, Red Admiral, Queen, Fritillary, and Swallowtail butterflies, and Hummingbird Clearwing Moths. In a sunny, moist spot with rich soil, it can grow up to 5' tall, with slender erect stems and narrow, pointed leaves. Unlike some other milkweed species, it is not aggressive. Not drought tolerant. Deer rarely eat milkweeds due to their acrid taste.
Of the five plant communities most prevalent in eastern Washtenaw County prior to 1800 (Dry Southern Forest, Dry-Mesic Southern Forest, Mesic Southern Forest, Oak Barrens, and Southern Hardwood Swamp), milkweeds are generally associated with the one most closely approaching a prairie, the Oak Barrens community.