Asclepias glaucescens
“Nodding Milkweed”

Photo by Bofozt

This super rare milkweed hailing from the Southwest, Baja California and northern Mexico has a unique feature – its summer blooming flower clusters hang upside down, leading to its common name. Groups of ten to twenty 1/4” star-shaped white flowers are tinged green and have pale violet backsides. It is a favorite host plant for the Monarch butterfly as well as a nectar source for other local butterflies. There is great variety in its size, from 10” to 4' tall, with elliptic leaves that are typically 4” long but only 1-2” wide. They are a muted glaucous green with a pale pink center rib. This deciduous milkweed makes a great addition to a pollinator garden, beautifies a dry garden bed or adds subtle charm to neighboring succulents. It produces copious amounts of latex sap, meaning it repels all insects but the butterflies adapted to it, so wear gloves when pruning it. It self-seeds freely, if seedpods are left to mature. Plant in full sun in well-drained soil and give only occasional water once established. Deer and snail resistant.

PLEASE BE ADVISED - Due to CA agricultural regulations, we’re required to treat all plants, including Asclepias, plants with BT (a non-toxic, naturally occurring biological larvicide) to help combat the Light Brown Apple Moth (LBAM). BT is toxic to caterpillars. If you plan to introduce Monarch caterpillars to this plant, we recommend letting it establish for one year before doing so to ensure it is large enough to provide sufficient food and the BT has had time to wear off.

Curious Plantsman

Low/Avg. Water

USDA zones 5-11