Plant family: Asclepiadaceae - Milkweed
Plant type: Sub-shrub
Plant origin: N/A, California
Coastal Sage Scrub, Grassland, Woodland/Forest
Clay, Decomposed Granite, Sandy Loam, Adaptable, Alkaline
Attracts Wildlife, Tolerant of Clay Soil
Narrow-leaved Milkweed has narrow leaves, hence the name, and a wide native range. It is a perennial with 3' tall stem and large (but narrow) five inch leaves, and a five inch or so flower cluster. It tends to go dormant in the winter and regenerate the next year. It is a ‘must-have’ for butterfly gardens. The alkaloids associated with this plant give the butterfly larvae that feed on it protection but if the butterfly has not evolved with the milkweed they have no tolerance for the particular alkaloid of the species. In general it is larval food plant for the Monarch butterfly. In our area, this plant is covered with monarch caterpillars during the summer. Asclepias fascicularis can tolerate coastal clays.
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