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Asclepias speciosa

Common namesshowy milkweed, common milkweed
Ecocrop code12493

DESCRIPTION: It is hairy, rough, perennial, herbaceous plant reaching 75-150 cm in height and 50-60 cm in width. Stems and leaves exude a milky sap when cut or bruised. One plant can form a large clump by its spreading rhizomes. Leaves opposite, 15-20 cm long, velvety, gray-green, persistent. The fragrant, hermaphrodite flowers look like crowns or stars, with the {{corolla}E} reflexed and rose-purple and hoods elevated above the corolla in pinkish-white to pinkish-purple, aging yellow. The fruits are rough seed pods (5-8 cm long) which split open when ripe releasing their numerous silky-tailed seeds for dispersal by the wind. USE: The flowers, gum, leaves, seed and seedpod are edible whereas the rhizome is poisonous. Dye, fibre, latex, oil, paper, pollution control, and stuffing can be obtained from the plant. It has medicinal properties. GROWING PERIOD: Perennial. COMMON NAMES: Showy milkweed, Common milkweed. FURTHER INF: It grows in clumps beside roadways, on abandoned farmlands, dry habitats, dry slopes, construction sites, logging landing fills, open woodland areas, waste areas and along streams and other open and disturbed areas. In western N. America it can be found from Minnesota to British Columbia, south to Kansas, Utah and California.