Spring Garden Tips
Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa) the 2017 Perennial Plant of the Year

Looking for an outstanding low maintenance perennial for your garden? Check out the Perennial Plants of the Year selected for their adaptability and outstanding performance in the landscape. The 2017 winner is an essential food for monarchs and a pollinator and gardener favorite – the Butterfly weed.

JavaScript is disabled!
To display this content, you need a JavaScript capable browser.

You'll enjoy the orange blossoms in meadow, prairie and even semi-formal gardens.

mgm audio 012017 PPY AsclepiasHardy in zones 4 to 9, butterfly weed grows best in full sun with well-drained soil and is drought tolerant once established. Mark its location in the garden to avoid accidently digging up this late-to-emerge perennial.

Deadhead faded flowers to encourage more blooms and if you want, to prevent the plant from reseeding.

Cut a few flowers to enjoy indoors. Extend their vase life by placing freshly cut flowers immediately in warm water. Then move to the refrigerator for 12 hours or into cold water.

A bit more information: Butterfly weed goes by several common names. Its butterfly appeal explains the most commonly used name. Other common names include butterfly milkweed as it is a member of the milkweed family. Orange milkweed for the brilliant orange flowers and pleurisy root, for its use in treating pleurisy. Native Americans chewed the tough root as a cure for pleurisy and other pulmonary illnesses.

Share
 

Related Garden Moments for Radio

2013 Year of the Wildflower

The National Garden Bureau declared 2013 Year of Wildflower. Celebrate by including a few wildflowers in your garden.

Listen to 2013 Year of the Wildflower...

All-America Selections Flower Winners

Add some color to the garden with the 2015 All-American Selections flower winners.

Read more...

Allium 'Summer Beauty' (Summer Beauty Flowering Onion)

Add a bit of color and form to your summer garden with Allium ‘Summer Beauty’. This flowering onion puts on its show during the heat of the mid-summer after most alliums have finished blooming.

Listen to Allium - Flowering Onion...

Attract Beneficial Insects with Spotted Bee Balm (Monarda punctata)

Many gardeners know and grow bee balm (Monarda dydima), but its beautiful mildew resistant cousin spotted bee balm is often overlooked.

Read more...

Attracting Birds and Butterflies to the Garden

Add a little extra color, motion and interest to your landscape by attracting birds and butterflies to the garden. Make sure your yard provides all the essentials - food, water, shelter and a place to raise young. And be sure to avoid the use of pesticides that can harm the wildlife you are trying to attract.

Listen to Garden Moment...

Bee Balm (Monarda) - It's Not Just for the Perennial Border

Wild bergamont also known as bee balm and botanically as Monarda fistulosa is the 2013 Notable Native Herb of the Year. Include this beauty in herb, perennial and natural gardens. Plant them in areas where you can enjoy the flowers as well as the butterflies and hummingbirds they attract.

"Listen to ... bee balm Monarda

Blood Lilies

Looking for something different to grow? Try a blood lily.

Read more...

Celebrate National Pollinators Week

Celebrate national Pollinator Week by lending a helping hand to bees, butterflies, beetles, birds and bats that help pollinate our gardens, so we have seeds, fruits and vegetables to eat.

Read more...

Fall Blooming Pollinator Plant - Alma Potschke Aster

The bright rose pink flowers of Alma Potschke aster are sure to grab your attention. Consider adding this aster to your landscape for a blast of fall color and late season nectar for the butterflies and bees.

Read more...

Grow Parsley for You and the Butterflies to Enjoy

Parsley is not just a garnish for your meals. This Vitamin rich herb is a great addition to your garden and recipes.

Listen to Parsley in the garden...

Growing Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis)

Brighten the summer garden with spires of bright red blooms of cardinal flowers and the hummingbirds and butterflies they attract.

Read more...

Heat Loving Annuals for the Garden and Containers

Give summer gardens and container plantings a boost by incorporating a few heat-loving annuals.

Read more...

Heat Tolerant Cilantro Flavored Papalo

Cilantro is a favorite ingredient in guacamole, tacos, rice dishes and of course salsa. But as summer temperatures climb the cilantro quickly goes to seed. Reduce the frustration by adding a bit of Papalo, also known as summer cilantro, to your garden.

Read more...

Include Some Tall Plants in the Garden (Look to the Sky)

Change your garden perspective. Include a few tall plants in the landscape and start looking skyward.

Listen to Grow Tall Plants in your Garden...

Jewelweed Pain Relief for Stinging Nettle and Poison Ivy

Take the sting out of stinging nettle and itch out of poison ivy with the help of Jewelweed.

Read more...

Junior Walker Catmint

If you’ve grown Walker’s Low catmint – you know it’s not so low. In fact, this heat and drought tolerant perennial grows 2 to 3 feet tall and wide. If this is a problem, I have an alternative for you.

Listen to Junior Walker Catmint...

Kid-Friendly Gardening

Whether you garden with your own children or those of family and friends consider making a portion of your landscape kid friendly.

Listen to Kid Friendly Gardening...

Late Season Bloom, Moisture Tolerant Turtlehead

Add some late season color to your garden with the versatile turtlehead perennial plant.

Read more...

Long Blooming Digiplexis Flowers

Looking for something new and exciting in your garden? Consider growing a Digiplexis plant in your garden or container plantings.

Read more...

Low Maintenance Willow Amsonia

Add seasonal beauty to your landscape with the help of Willow Amsonia. This easy care perennial makes a nice addition to mixed borders as well as formal, informal and more natural flower gardens.

Read more...

Mark the Spot to Protect Perennials

X may not mark the spot in the garden – but bulbs, plant markers or standing stems sure can help guide your cleanup efforts next spring.

Balloon flower, butterfly weed and swamp mallow are a few of the plants that emerge late in the spring. This makes it easy to accidently weed them out during spring clean-up.

Listen to Protecting Perennials...

National Camera Day

Celebrate National Camera day by spending a bit of time in your garden or favorite landscape.

Read more...

National Camera Day: Capture Your Garden's Beauty

June 29th is National Camera Day, so grab your favorite camera, cell phone or tablet and head to the garden.

Read more...

Native Nectar Plant - New England Aster (Symphyotrichum novae-angliae)

Give the Monarch butterflies a nutrient boost for their long migration south with the help of the New England Aster. You, the monarchs and bees will find these North American natives growing along roadsides, in meadows and prairies. Consider adding a few to your garden.

Read more...

Native Steeplebush Adds Beauty and Attracts Butterflies

It's not your common spirea found in many commercial and home landscapes; but rather it's less utilized relative and North American native shrub known as steeplebush or hardhack (Spiraea tomentosa).

Read more...

New Heat and Drought Loving Annual Varieties

Zinnias, sunflowers and moss roses are the go to annuals for hot dry weather. Liven up the summer garden with a few new heat tolerant varieties.

Read more...

Peanut Butter Shrub (Clerodendron) and Popcorn Plant (Cassia)

Add some fun and fragrance to the garden with a peanut butter shrub and popcorn plant.

Read more...

Propagating New Plants from Root Cuttings

Expand your oriental poppy planting this summer. These poppies, butterfly weed, gas plants and other fleshy rooted perennials can be started from just a piece of the root.

Listen to . . . Propagating New Plants from Root Cuttings

Simple Combination Attracts Goldfinches

What do cosmos and lettuce have in common? You can start them both from seed directly in the garden for you and the goldfinches to enjoy.

Read more...

Start New Perennials from Root Cuttings

Expand your perennial plant collection or share a family heirloom with friends and family. Root cuttings of butterfly weed, bleeding heart and oriental poppies to start new plants to share.

Read more...

Summersweet (Clethra alnifolia) for Difficult Growing Conditions

Don't let heavy shade or damp and clay soil stop you from gardening. Consider adding a Summersweet, Clethra alnifolia, to your landscape.

Read more...

Threadleaf Coreopsis

Threadleaf coreopsis is a long-blooming drought tolerant perennial that attracts butterflies and goldfinches to the garden. Add a few long time favorites and colorful new introductions to your landscape.

Read more...

Turn Milkweed into Gifts and Decorations

Craft your own indoor tree, wreath or star from milkweed pods.

Read more...