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21 Irresistible Chatham County, GA Milkweeds (Asclepias spp.) to Grow for Butterflies

Table of Contents for Chatham County, GA Native or Nearly Native Milkweeds

General Information about Native Plant and Pollinator Gardens

When planting a native plant and pollinator garden in Chatham County, GA, you need to ensure that you have a selection of plants that provide blooms at different times of the year. In addition to the plants, you need to provide a source of water such as a birdbath or water feature, shelter for animals, and nesting locations for birds. Be sure to also include plants of different heights for perching. Resources you can use for more information on butterfly gardening in Chatham County, GA include the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension Service, The Georgia Native Plant Society., and the Coastal Georgia Botanical Gardens.

Location of Chatham County, Georgia

Chatham County, Georgia marked in red on a Georgia map.
Georgia map with Chatham County marked in red — David Benbennick, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

Chatham County is located in southeast Georgia. Savannah is the largest city in the county.

USDA Plant Hardiness Zones in Chatham County, Georgia

2023 USDA plant hardiness zones map in the state of Georgia.
Georgia 2023 USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map — USDA Public Domain

Chatham County, Georgia is located within Plant Hardiness Zone 9a. When selecting plants in Chatham County you will want to get those that can handle temperatures as cold as +200F.

Butterflies in Chatham County, GA that are Hosted by Milkweeds (Asclepias spp.)

Purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) with Monarch butterfly.
Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus) on Purple Coneflower — Robert Coxe, Image

Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus)

The monarch butterfly is an iconic butterfly in North America and is a bell-weather of the environment. Having a distinctive orange color with black stripes, this butterfly has a wingspan of 3 in (7.6 cm) to 5 in (12.7 cm). The monarch butterfly uses milkweed to get cardenolides, a toxin that is distasteful to predators. This butterfly can have several flights a year and is known for its migrations to Mexico each year. However, some populations in California, Arizona, and Florida do not migrate and breed year-round (Urguhart, et al 1968).

List of Milkweeds that are Native or Nearly Native in Chatham County, Georgia

1. Clasping Milkweed (Asclepias amplexicaulis), a Milkweed for Moist to Dry Soils

Clasping milkweed is found in open to semi-open places such as meadows, savannas, woodlands, and roadsides. While it likes full sun, this plant can handle part-shade and needs clay, loam, or sandy soil that is well-drained. Reproduction is through seeds and underground rhizomes. The pink to purple flower clusters have about 25 fragrant flowers each. If planted in Chatham County, it may be good to plant it in shade to ensure longer term survival from climate change heat stress.

Pinkish flowers of clasping milkweed (Asclepias amplexicaulis) in a field, a Raleigh milkweed.
Flowers of Clasping Milkweed (Asclepias amplexicaulis) — cassi saari, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Facts about Clasping Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, scattered throughout Georgia (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: Yes
  • Natural Habitat: dry woodlands, meadows, and roadsides
  • Height: up to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: greenish-pink, red, brown, to purple
  • Flowering Period: March to September
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Gardening with Clasping Milkweed

2. Carolina Milkweed (Asclepias cinerea), a Milkweed for Moist Sandy Soils

Carolina milkweed grows best in moist sandy soils that have full sun to part shade. During times of drought it is best to keep the soil moist, if possible. Plants should have plenty of spacing to ensure air circulation. Potential companion plants in the garden include blazing star (Liatris spicata), purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea), black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia hirta), swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata), and clasping milkweed (Asclepias amplexicaulis).

Purplish flowers of carolina milkweed (Asclepias cinerea).
Flowers of Carolina Milkweed — Asclepias cinerea Walter observed in United States of America by Amber M. King (licensed under CC BY 4.0)

Facts about Carolina Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, southeastern and southern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: Yes
  • Natural Habitat: savannas, moist meadows, grasslands, pine barrens, and sandy ridges
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 2.5 ft (0.8 m)
  • Flower Color: white (Woodson 1954), ashy-gray (Weakley 2022) to lavender (Florida Wildflowers)
  • Flowering Period: May to August
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 8-10

Gardening with Carolina Milkweed

3. Large-flower Milkweed (Asclepias connivens), a Milkweed for Moist to Wet Sandy Soils

Large-flower milkweed enjoys full sun and generally moist soils. Plants should be spaced at least 1-2 feet apart in order to have adequate air circulation. Companion plants in the garden can include butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa), lanceleaf coreopsis (Coreopsis lanceolata), and purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea). These plants will provide nearly year-round color and attract a variety of pollinators.

Plant of large-flower milkweed (Asclepias connivens) in an open area.
Large-flowered Milkweed — Asclepias connivens Baldwin ex Elliott observed in United States of America by Matt Berger (licensed under CC BY 4.0)

Facts about Large-flower Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, southeastern and southern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: Yes
  • Natural Habitat: pine barrens, flatwoods, bogs, marshes, and swamp margins
  • Height: 0.5 ft (0.2 m) to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: white to greenish-yellow (Woodson 1954), sometimes with purple (Weakley 2022).
  • Flowering Period: June to August
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 8-11

Gardening with Large-flower Milkweed

4. Poke Milkweed (Asclepias exaltata), a Milkweed for Shade and Moist Soils

Poke milkweed is a part-shade to shade loving milkweed, but handle full sun in a garden setting. A variety of soils such as clay, loamy, and sand that are moderate to wet and are well-drained are needed. The leaves of this milkweed are notable for being dark green with purplish veins. Suitable companions for this species in Chatham County that grow in wet places include swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata), few-flower milkweed (Asclepias lanceolata), obedient plant (Physostegia virginiana), and false nettle (Boehmeria cylindrica).

White flowers of poke milkweed (Asclepias exaltata) in a wooded area.
Poke Milkweed (Asclepias exaltata) — homeredwardprice, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Facts about Poke Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, northern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: moist woods, roadsides, and edges of woods
  • Height: 2 ft (0.6 m) to 6 ft (1.8 m)
  • Flower Color: white to green with accents of rose, purple, or blue
  • Flowering Period: May to August
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Gardening with Poke Milkweed

5. Sandhill Milkweed (Asclepias humistrata), a Milkweed for Dry Sandy Soils

Sandhill milkweed, as the name would suggest, requires dry well-drained sandy soils with a full sun exposure. Plants can be sown after the first frost and need to be spaced 1 to 3 feet apart to ensure maximum air circulation. Fertilizers, if used, need to be low in nitrogen for this species. Other potential companions that will provide a variety of color and texture include blazing star (Liatris spicata), citrus (Citrus spp.), goldenrods (Solidago spp.), and Joe-pye weeds (Eutrochium spp.). Be aware that this plant may experience heat stress from climate change warming since it is at the upper range of it hardiness zone.

Plant of sandhill milkweed (Asclepias humistrata) in a field.
Asclepias humistrata Walter observed in United States of America by nat_t (licensed under CC0 1.0)

Facts about Sandhill Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, central, southeastern and southern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: Yes
  • Natural Habitat: dry oak woods, pine barrens, roadsides
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: white, pink or purple
  • Flowering Period: April to July
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 8-9

Gardening with Sandhill Milkweed

6. Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata), a Milkweed for Moist Soils

Previous mentioned as a companion to the poke milkweed, swamp milkweed likes wet soils in full sun or partial shade. However, in a garden setting, this species can handle drier conditions. Swamp milkweed is a fairly tall milkweed, needs space to spread out and is fairly low maintenance. The fragrant pink flowers are a magnet for bees and other insects. Potential companion species are similar to those for the clasping milkweed.

Pink flowers of swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) from Pennsylvania.
Flowers of Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) — Cbaile19, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons

Facts about Swamp Milkweed

Asclepias incarnata subsp. pulchra in Georgia

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, scattered (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: Yes
  • Natural Habitat: shores of streams, lakes, ponds, and other wetlands
  • Height: 3 ft (0.9 m) to 5 ft (1.5 m)
  • Flower Color: pink or red
  • Flowering Period: July to September
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Gardening with Swamp Milkweed

7. Few-flower Milkweed (Asclepias lanceolata), a Milkweed for Moist Soils

Few-flower milkweed is native to southeastern and southern Georgia and to Chatham County. This milkweed likes moist to wet soils in full sun to part-shade. Along with butterfly weed, this is one of two orange to orangish milkweeds you can grow in the area. Other species that would compliment this species in the garden include black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia fulgida), zinnias (Zinnia elegans), scarlet sage (Salvia coccinea), white vervain (Verbena urticiolia), and cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis).

Orangish flowers of few-flower milkweed (Asclepias lanceolata).
Flowers of Few-flower Milkweed — Asclepias lanceolata Walter observed in United States of America by Robert Webster (licensed under CC BY SA 4.0)

Facts about Few-flower Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, southeastern and southern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: Yes
  • Natural Habitat: edges of marshes and wet areas of pine barrens and savannas
  • Height: 2 ft (0.6 m) to 5 ft (1.5 m)
  • Flower Color: yellow, orange, red
  • Flowering Period: May to August
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 5-11

Gardening with Few-flower Milkweed

8. Long-leaf Milkweed (Asclepias longifolia), a Milkweed for Moist Soils

Long-leaf milkweed is another wet soil lover that has a rare variety (var. hirtella) and a more common variety (var. longifolia) in Georgia. While not native to the Chatham County, this plant can handle the plant hardiness zone of the area currently. This species should be placed in full sun and in moist to wet soils. Possible companion plants to compliment this species include blanket flower (Gaillardia pulchella), dogwood (Cornus florida), wild indigo (Baptisia australis), passionflower (Passiflora spp.) and patridge pea (Chamaecrista fasciculata).

Purplish flowers of long-leaf milkweed (Asclepias longifolia).
Flowers of Long-leaf Milkweed — Asclepias longifolia Michx. observed in United States of America by Justin (licensed under CC0 1.0)

Facts about Long-leaf Milkweed

Asclepias longifolia var. hirtella and var. longifolia in Georgia

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, rare in northeastern counties — var. hirtella, central and southern counties – var. longifolia (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: bogs, swamps, and wet flatwoods
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 2.5 ft (0.8 m)
  • Flower Color: greenish-white with a tinge of purple
  • Flowering Period: April to July
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 4-9

Gardening with Long-leaf Milkweed

9. Michaux’s Milkweed (Asclepias michauxii), a Milkweed for Well-drained Soils

Michaux’s milkweed is the smallest milkweed that can be grown in the Chatham County area. The small size makes it suitable for container gardens. Potential companion plants are similar to those for the sandhill milkweed. This species would make a good long-term choice in light of climate change since it can exist two zones higher in hardiness.

Plant of Michaux's milkweed (Asclepias michauxii) with white flowers.
Michaux’s Milkweed — “Asclepias michauxii” by mcferny is licensed under CC BY 4.0.

Facts about Michaux’s Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, southeastern and southern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: pine savannas, pine-oak woods, pine barrens, dry pinelands
  • Height: 4 in (10.2 cm) to 16 in (40.6 cm)
  • Flower Color: greenish-white with a purplish tinge
  • Flowering Period: April to June
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 7-11

Gardening with Michaux’s Milkweed

10. Pineland Milkweed (Asclepias obovata), a Milkweed for Moist Soils

Pineland milkweed likes slightly acidic to neutral soils that are moist, but can handle medium soils with reduced stature. It also enjoys full sun exposure and the plants need room for air circulation. Companion plants include butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa), swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata), blazing star (Liatris spicata), wild bergamot (Monarda fistulosa), and black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia hirta).

Plant of pineland milkweed (Asclepias obovata) with greenish-yellow flowers.
Pineland Milkweed — Asclepias obovata Elliott observed in United States of America by kcthetc1 (licensed under CC0 1.0)

Facts about Pineland Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, central and southern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: sandy pinelands, fields, roadsides (Woodson 1954), dry open woods (Lelong 1977), and pastures (Mohr 1901)
  • Height: 0.5 ft (0.2 m) to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: greenish-yellow (Woodson 1954) with a purplish hood
  • Flowering Period: June to October
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 7-10

Gardening with Pineland Milkweed

11. Savannah Milkweed (Asclepias pedicellata), a Milkweed for Medium to Moist Sandy Well-drained Soils

Savannah milkweed is a milkweed of sandy well-drained soils that have a full sun exposure. Plants can be sown in the fall for the roots to establish or in the spring after the first frost. Like a lot of the other milkweeds, plants need to be at 1-2 feet apart to allow for air circulation. Companion plants in the garden include butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa), purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea), Joe-Pye weed (Eutrochium fistulosum), blazing star (Liatris spicata), and beebalm (Monarda didyma).

Greenish-yellow flowers of savannah milkweed (Asclepias pedicellata).
Savannah Milkweed — Asclepias pedicellata Walter observed in United States of America by Justin (licensed under CC0 1.0)

Facts about Savannah Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, rare in southeastern and southern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: pine flatwoods and savannas
  • Height: 0.5 ft (0.2 m) to 1.5 ft (0.5 m)
  • Flower Color: yellow, green, white to cream
  • Flowering Period: May to July
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 7-10

Gardening with Savannah Milkweed

12. Aquatic Milkweed (Asclepias perennis), a Milkweed for Wet to Moist Well-drained Soils

Aquatic milkweed needs a lot of water and as such is fairly high maintenance. However, this milkweed is noted as being one of the best garden milkweeds (Pelton 1996). Companion plants to this species include swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata), long-leaf milkweed (Asclepias longifolia), and false nettle (Boehmeria cylindrica).

Aquatic milkweed (Asclepias perennis) with white flowers in floodplain forest.
Aquatic Milkweed — Asclepias perennis Walter observed in United States of America by Étienne Lacroix-Carignan (licensed under CC0 1.0)

Facts about Aquatic Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, in central, southeastern, and southern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: Yes
  • Natural Habitat: swamp margins, alluvial woods, ditches and marshes
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 3.5 ft (1.1 m)
  • Flower Color: white to pink, white with pinkish hues, purplish-rose to purple
  • Flowering Period: April to October
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 6-10

Gardening with Aquatic Milkweed

13. Red Milkweed (Asclepias rubra), a Milkweed for Moist to Wet Soils

Another milkweed of moist soils, this species is often found in full sun. However, in a garden setting it can be grown in medium soils. Other companion plants would be those that can also handle moist soils such as swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata), few-flower milkweed (Ascleapis lanceolata), and false nettle (Boehmeria cylindrica). The small size could make this plant suitable for containers. This milkweed is historic to Georgia but can still exist in gardens within the state.

Close-up of pink flowers of red milkweed (Asclepias rubra).
Flowers of Red Milkweed (Asclepias rubra) — peganum from Small Dole, England, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Facts about Red Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, historic to western counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: bogs, meadows, and pine barrens
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: pink, purple, red to lavender
  • Flowering Period: May to August
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 6-9

Gardening with Red Milkweed

14. Showy Milkweed (Asclepias speciosa), a Milkweed for Medium to Well-drained Soils

Showy milkweed is a commonly planted milkweed in butterfly gardens around the United States. It is a small to medium sized plant, making it suitable for containers, but whether planted or in a container, it needs good drainage. While not native to Georgia or to Chatham County, it can handle the plant hardiness zone. It is a perfect compliment to other milkweeds and help increase the selection available to butterflies.

Pinkish-white flowers of showy milkweed (Asclepias speciosa).
Flowers of Showy Milkweed — Asclepias speciosa Torr. observed in Canada by markeambard (licensed under CC0 1.0)

Facts about Showy Milkweed

  • Native to George: No (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: roadsides, fields and woodlands
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: purple to pink
  • Flowering Period: April to June
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Gardening with Showy Milkweed

15. Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca), a Milkweed for all Conditions

This milkweed is one of the most common in the midwest and northeastern United States. The large leaves provide ample feeding opportunities for monarch butterflies. Common milkweed is a plant for all conditions and can spread by seed or rhizomes, so it should have some space in the garden. While not native to Chatham County it can currently handle the hardiness zone, but may face heat stress in the future with climate change warming.

Common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) with eastern tiger swallowtail.
Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) with Eastern Tiger Swallowtail — Author Image

Facts about Common Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, northern and one southern county (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: fields, pastures, roadsides
  • Height: up to 6 ft (1.8 m)
  • Flower Color: pink, greenish-purple, greenish-white, to white
  • Flowering Period: June to August
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Gardening with Common Milkweed

16. Velvetleaf Milkweed (Asclepias tomentosa), a Milkweed for Medium to Dry Sandy Soils

If you have medium or dry soil with full sun or partial shade, velvetleaf milkweed may be for you. Air circulation is must for this species and other milkweeds. Suitable companion plants that grow in the same conditions include butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa), yarrow (Achillea millefolium), stonecrop (Sedum spp.), and black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia hirta).

Plant of velvetleaf milkweed (Asclepias tomentosa) in a wooded area.
Velvetleaf Milkweed — Asclepias tomentosa Elliott collected in United States of America (licensed under CC0 1.0)

Facts about Velveteaf Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, rare in two west-central counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: pine woodlands and scrub-oak sandhills
  • Height: 2 ft (0.6 m) to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: yellow-green or green with pink to maroon tints
  • Flowering Period: April to August
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 7-10

Gardening with Velvetleaf Milkweed

17. Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa), a Milkweed for all Conditions

Butterfly weed is one of three milkweeds in the United States that has an orange colored flower and is one of two that does have a milky sap. The orange flowers this is plant are iconic and make it a favorite as well as its abilities to handle most garden conditions. Because of being able to handle most garden conditions, it is a complimentary species to a lot of others.

Orange flowers of butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa) in a garden.
Flowers of Butterfly Weed (Asclepias tuberosa) — Robert Coxe, Image

Facts about Butterfly Weed

Asclepias tuberosa subsp. rolfsii (rare) and subsp. tuberosa in Georgia

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, scattered throughout for both (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: Yes
  • Natural Habitat: fields, roadsides and open woods
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: orange
  • Flowering Period: June to October
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Gardening with Butterfly Weed

18. Red-ring Milkweed (Asclepias variegata), a Milkweed for Dry Sandy Soils

Red-ring milkweed an interesting flower that is white with a red or purple band. This makes the flower an interesting conversation piece and can be grown in full sun and well-drained soils. In the wild, this milkweed is found in thickets and roadsides. Companion plants include blanket flower (Gaillardia aristata), speedwell (Veronica spicata),

Close-up of white flowers of red ring milkweed (Asclepias variegata).
Flowers of Red-ring Milkweed (Asclepias variegata) — Masebrock, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Facts about Red-ring Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, generally northern counties, scattered in south (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: Yes
  • Natural Habitat: thickets and roadsides
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 4 ft (1.2 m)
  • Flower Color: white with a ring of purple to red at the base
  • Flowering Period: May to July
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Gardening with Red-ring Milkweed

19. Whorled Milkweed (Asclepias verticillata), a Milkweed for Medium to Dry Soil

Whorled milkweed has narrow-leaves providing an interesting textual contrast to gardens. If you have average to dry soils and full sun to part-shade this species could live in your garden. Some companion plants that will provide texture and color interest include golden alexander (Zizia aurea), wild petunia (Ruellia humilis), New Jersey Tea (Ceanothus americanus), black-eyed susan (Rudbeckia fulgida), little bluestem (Schizahyrium scoparium), and butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa).

Close-up of white flowers of whorled milkweed (Asclepias verticillata).
Flowers of Whorled Milkweed (Asclepias verticillata) — Joshua Mayer (wackybadger), CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Facts about Whorled Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, widely scattered throughout (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: meadows and fields
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: green to white flowers
  • Flowering Period: May to September
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Gardening with Whorled Milkweed

20. Green Comet Milkweed (Asclepias viridiflora), a Milkweed for Medium to Dry Sandy Soils

Green comet milkweed is a milkweed having two different flower colors depending on the age. Thriving in full sun to part shade and average to dry sandy soils, this could be an excellent addition to your garden and provide leafy interest. Companion plants are similar to those for whorled milkweed.

Close-up of flowers of green comet milkweed (Asclepias viridiflora).
Flowers of Green Comet Milkweed (Asclepias viridiflora) — Barnes Dr Thomas G, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Facts about Green Comet Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, central and southwestern counties (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: meadows and fields
  • Height: 1 ft (0.3 m) to 3 ft (0.9 m)
  • Flower Color: green, aging to yellow with a purple tinge
  • Flowering Period: June to August
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 3-9

Gardening with Green Comet Milkweed

21. Green Milkweed (Asclepias viridis), a Milkweed for Medium to Dry High pH Soils

Green comet milkweed is a milkweed having two different flower colors depending on the age. Thriving in full sun to part shade and average to dry sandy soils, this could be an excellent addition to your garden and provide leafy interest. Some possible companion plants to this species in your garden include coral honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens), blue mistflower (Conoclinum coelestinum), purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea), goldenrod (Solidago spp.), Joe-Pye weed (Eutrochium purpureum), and little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium).

Plant of green milkweed (Asclepias viridis).
Green Milkweed — Asclepias viridis Walter observed in United States of America by Diana Foreman (licensed under CC0 1.0)

Facts about Green Milkweed

  • Native to Georgia: Yes, rare in northwestern and one eastern county (Kartesz 2015)
  • Native to Chatham County: No
  • Natural Habitat: Open areas such as prairies, roadsides (Allison 1995, Lathrop 1958, Whisenant 1981), pasture (Nelson and Harsley 2010), pine barrens (Dee and Palmer 2017), and calcareous areas (Weakley 2022)
  • Height: 0.5 ft (0.2 m) to 2 ft (0.6 m)
  • Flower Color: green (Woodson 1954), yellowish-green (Weakley 2022), or white
  • Flowering Period: April to October
  • USDA Hardiness Zone: 5-9

Gardening with Green Milkweed

When selecting your Chatham County, GA milkweed, be sure to make sure that it grows in your zone and habitat.

Books where you can find out more about Monarchs and Butterfly Gardening in Chatham County, GA

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References for Chatham County, GA Milkweeds

  • Allison, James R. 1995. Prairies in Georgia! They’re for real, as the flora shows. Tipularia 10: 2-8.
  • Dee, Justin R. and Michael W. Palmer. 2017. Annual rings of perennial forbs and mature oaks show similar effects of climate but inconsistent responses to fire in in the North American prairie-forest ecotone. Canadian Journal of Forest Research 47: 716-726.
  • Lathrop, Earl W. 1958. The Flora and Ecology of the Chatautauqua Hills in Kansas. The University of Kansas Science Bulletin 39(4): 97-210.
  • Lelong, Michel G. 1977. Annotated List of vascular plants in Mobile, Alabama. Sida 7(2): 118-146.
  • Mohr, Charles E. 1901. Plant Life of Alabama. Contributions from the United States National Herbarium v. 6.
  • Nelson, A.D. and S. Harsley. 2010. County Records and Major Range Extensions for West Cross Timbers’ Angiosperms from Tarleton State University’s Hunewell Ranch in Erath County, Texas. Texas Journal of Science 62(2): 111-126.
  • Pelton, John. 1996. An April 1996 Field Trip to the Ouachitas. Claytonia Fall 1996.
  • Urguhart, Fredrick Albert, Norah Roden Urguhart, and Francis Munger. 1968. Population of Danaus plexippus in Southern California. Journal of Research on the Lepidoptera 7(4): 169-181.
  • Weakley, A.S. and southeastern Flora Team. 2022. Flora of southeastern United States. University of North Carolina Herbarium, North Carolina Botanical Garden.
  • Whisenant, S.G. 1981. The Vascular Flora of McCullough County, Texas. Texas Journal of Science 33(2,3,4): 197-220.
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Robert Coxe

Robert Coxe

Robert Coxe is a professional ecologist and botanist who has worked as the State Ecologist of Delaware and as an ecologist for the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy. He is also a former Past-President of the Pennsylvania Academy of Science. He currently is an innkeeper at McMullen House Bed & Breakfast LLC and a web designer and owner for Silphium Design LLC.

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