Asclepias tuberosa

Clay-Orange Butterfly Weed

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This special selection of the wildflower Orange Butterfly Weed is unique in its ability to grow in heavier soils including clay. Typically, Asclepias grows in sandy soils. A food source for Monarch butterfly caterpillars and very attractive to many varieties of butterflies. Perennial Plant Association Plant of The Year 2017.

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Zones 4 - 9
Advantages
Deer Resistant
Deer Resistant
Attract Butterflies
Attract Butterflies
Bee Friendly
Bee Friendly
Native
Light Requirements
Full Sun
Full Sun
Annual Rainfall
Drought Resistant / Waterwise
10 to 20", 20 to 30", 30 to 40" (with care)
Bloom Time Late spring to summer
Shipping Shipping begins in early September, coldest zones first. Buy now and we'll ship your order at the ideal planting time for your region. More shipping info Learn More…
SKU HBLBJ21

Details

Perennial Plant Association Plant of The Year 2017. The glowing orange flowers of this native wildflower are irresistible to hummingbirds, butterflies, and even people! This long-lived, tap-rooted plant needs a couple of growing seasons to establish its deep roots and reach mature size. Our uncommon strain of Asclepias is native to clay soils making it adaptable to a variety of clay and loam conditions; the most commonly available plants must be grown in sandy soils. (seed propagated) Asclepias tuberosa Native Range: AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, VT, WI, WV.
Associated SKUs
HBLBJXX
23201P (Plant - 5" deep pot) - Out of stock.
HBLBJ21 (Plant - 2.5" deep pot)
Common Name Clay-Orange Butterfly Weed
Botanical Name Asclepias tuberosa
Zones 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9
Light Requirements Full Sun
Flower Color Orange
Mature Height 15-18" tall
Mature Spread 15-18" wide
Bloom Time Late spring to summer
Ships As Potted Plant
Native Yes
Planting Time Spring / Summer, Fall
Soil Type Clay Soil, Low Fertility Soil, Well-Drained Soil
Soil Moisture Drought Resistant / Waterwise
Amount of Rain 10 to 20", 20 to 30", 30 to 40" (with care)
Advantages Deer Resistant, Attract Butterflies, Bee Friendly, Native
Special Groups High Country Gardens Introduction
Ideal Region Anywhere In The US, Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, Southwest, West, Pacific Northwest
Neonicotinoid-Free Yes - Learn More
Ships to Hawaii, Alaska & Canada No

Planting Guides

Tips For Growing Milkweed/Butterflyweed (Asclepias)

Asclepias (Milkweed) are sun loving plants that are essential perennials for monarch butterflies providing food for caterpillars and nectar for adult butterflies. They bloom from mid-summer into early fall and, with their milky sap, are resistant to rabbits and deer.

Asclepias can be divided into two groups for plant care; Asclepias tuberosa with orange (sometimes yellow) flowers and all the other species with pink (sometimes white) flowers.

1. Asclepias tuberosa (Orange Butterfly Weed) - this perennial stays dormant until later in the spring than many other plants, especially when grown in pots. It's fine to plant dormant plants; don't up-pot them for planting later in the growing season.

  • Need sandy or gravelly soils (except the Clay form which does well in heavier soils including dry clay.)
  • Does best with gravel mulches
  • After their second growing season, only requires deep but infrequent watering. Plant in full hot sun.
  • ust a few handfuls of compost and Yum Yum Mix added to the planting hole is enough. Don't plant into a rich, highly-amended soil.
  • Special comments:

  • When planting dormant plants, water thoroughly after planting and wait to water again until the plant comes into active growth, at which time a deep watering every week or so is adequate. Take care not to overwater young transplants.
  • Asclepias has a long, carrot-like tap root that should remain undisturbed after planting and should NOT ever be divided.
  • 2. Asclepias speciosa, A. syriaca. A. incarnata (Milkweed) - these perennial species stay dormant later in the spring than many other plants, especially when they are grown in pots. It's fine to plant dormant plants; don't up-pot them for planting later in the growing season.

    Preferred growing conditions:

  • These species grow in a wide range of soil types, including clay.
  • They don't need mulching (except in very hot climates).
  • These are moisture-loving perennials and do well in wet to moderately moist soil conditions.
  • Plant in full to part sun areas.
  • They like compost-enriched soils at planting time.
  • Special comments:

  • Asclepias syriaca and A. speciosa will spread to make big patches of plants and are best planted in parts of the landscape where they won't crowd out less vigorous plants. Not recommended for the prime spots in your perennial beds.
  • Asclepias incarnata (Swamp Milkweed) is a more refined grower and is fine to include in perennial beds.
  • Garden care:

    • Fertilize Asclepias just once in fall with Yum Yum Mix and Planters II. - Naturalized plantings don't need additional fertilization.
    • To encourage re-seeding and provide winter interest with their ornamental seed pods, leave the stems intact over the winter. In mid-spring, remove old stems just above ground level.
    • All species of Asclepias are late to emerge in the spring, so don't be concerned if other perennials come up first and they remain dormant.

    View more Planting Guides, or download our complete Planting Guide for tips on caring for your plants when you receive your order, as well as planting instructions for Perennials, Spring-Planted Bulbs, Fall-Planted Bulbs, Cacti & Succulents, Xeric Plants and more.

    Shipping

    Plant Shipping: Buy now and we will ship your order at the ideal planting time for your region. Fall shipping begins the week of September 5, zones 3-4 first. Most plant orders arrive within 3-5 days, or less, of leaving our greenhouses. This prompt delivery is provided without additional express charges.

    Grass Plugs & Seed: Most orders ship within 5-8 business days (all zones).

    Gardening Goods:All non-plant items ship within 2-3 days.

    Standard shipping costs are $4.99 and up, depending on the size of the order.

    Make Fast Even Faster: For ‘Rush’ same week delivery, please call customer service at 800-925-9387.

    More Shipping Info

    Reviewsby PowerReviews

    REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    High Country GardensAsclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot
     
    3.5

    (based on 11 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (4)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (3)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (1)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (2)

    73%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

    • Accurate instructions (7)
    • Hardy (6)
    • Healthy (6)
    • Attractive (4)

    Cons

    No Cons

    Best Uses

    • Outdoors (8)
    • Garden (7)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Avid gardener (6), Master gardener (4)
      • Primary use:
      • Personal (11)

    Most Liked Positive Review

     

    Pretty and Easy to Grow

    I bought six of these plants a few years ago and they have done amazing. They are planted in clay soil on western and southern exposure where we get 95 degree days in the...Read complete review

    I bought six of these plants a few years ago and they have done amazing. They are planted in clay soil on western and southern exposure where we get 95 degree days in the summer and below zero in the winter. They have come back every year and do well with infrequent but deep watering throughout the hot summer months. They have a long flowering period and interesting seed pods that you can deadhead or leave on. Plus they are a food source for the Monarch larvae!

    VS

    Most Liked Negative Review

     

    No luck

    Frustrated - have tried these in the past and no luck then either. Wer'e zone 5 so should grow just fine - but not a flower for me I guess.

    Frustrated - have tried these in the past and no luck then either. Wer'e zone 5 so should grow just fine - but not a flower for me I guess.

    Reviewed by 11 customers

    Displaying reviews 1-11

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    (1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    Slow to start, incredibly hardy and takes much abuse.

    By 

    from Deer Lodge, MT zone 4a

    About Me Avid Gardener

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Accurate Instructions
    • Attractive
    • Hardy
    • Healthy
    • Versatile

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Garden
      • Outdoors

      Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

      I know others have had a hard time with these; mine was slow to grow the first year (as expected from this plant) and I almost lost it, thinking it had died, and almost digging up that ground, but remembered it is slow to come up in spring, and doesn't look like much when it does. Even so, it did flower, and survive, despite being moved (as a tap root, not recommended) and ignored/forgotten, and then replanted late in the season. It is definitely hardy and takes all kinds of abuse, doesn't require much water (didn't get any when dug up and forgotten - the root looked like a shriveled carrot - but it still revived when planted). I can't wait to see it in all its (undisturbed) glory this year.

      • Primary use:
      • Personal

      (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

       
      4.0

      Looking good...

      By 

      from Bakersfield, VT

      About Me Master Gardener

      See all my reviews

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Accurate Instructions
      • Hardy

      Cons

      • Flimsy
      • Small In Size

      Best Uses

      • Garden
      • Outdoors
      • Pool Area

      Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

      Planted in a nursery bed til I can put it in the permanent garden spot. Doing OK, but would've liked it to be a bit more robust.

      • Primary use:
      • Personal

      (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

       
      2.0

      Struggling plants

      By 

      from Birmingham, AL

      About Me Avid Gardener

      See all my reviews

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • The plants did not do well here.

      Cons

        Best Uses

          Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

          Healthy plants arrived and were well-placed in the garden with good soil conditions. We had an extremely hot and humid summer then drought. I hope what remained of them will overwinter and they will improve with being acclimated.

          • Primary use:
          • Personal

          (10 of 10 customers found this review helpful)

           
          1.0

          No luck

          By 

          from Colorado Springs, CO

          About Me Master Gardener

          Verified Reviewer

          Pros

            Cons

            • Never Grew

            Best Uses

            • Outdoors

            Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

            Frustrated - have tried these in the past and no luck then either. Wer'e zone 5 so should grow just fine - but not a flower for me I guess.

            • Primary use:
            • Personal

            (3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

             
            1.0

            Has not come up

            By 

            from Tn

            About Me Avid Gardener

            Verified Reviewer

            Pros

              Cons

              • Small In Size

              Best Uses

                Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

                Don't know because it hasn't come up

                • Primary use:
                • Personal

                (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                Attracts Butterflies and Hummingbirds

                By 

                from Tesuque, NM

                About Me Master Gardener

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Accurate Instructions
                • Attractive
                • Healthy

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Outdoors

                  Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

                  Slow to start, but give it time. Beautiful accent planting.

                  • Primary use:
                  • Personal

                  (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  5.0

                  Grew in difficult soil!

                  By 

                  from Littleton, CO

                  About Me Avid Gardener

                  Pros

                  • Accurate Instructions
                  • Attractive
                  • Fragrant
                  • Hardy
                  • Healthy

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Garden
                    • Outdoors

                    Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

                    I needed a plant that would grow in clay soil around a young tree as a filler plant. I never thought any perennial would survive there, but this one did, and grew quickly. My only problem is that the local bunny rabbits like chewing on the stems, sigh... These are beautiful when blooming.

                    • Primary use:
                    • Personal

                    (3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    3.0

                    Hmmmmm.

                    By 

                    from Denver, CO

                    About Me Avid Gardener

                    Verified Reviewer

                    Pros

                    • Accurate Instructions

                    Cons

                      Best Uses

                      • Garden
                      • Outdoors

                      Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

                      Three of them appeared to "take" before freeze. None appear to have survived the winter. Too expensive to ship (Denver to Denver) to have no success. I have others which are 3 years old and fine. Less satisfied with the product since ownership change.

                      • Primary use:
                      • Personal

                      (5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

                       
                      5.0

                      For the butterflies

                      By 

                      from Stratford, Ct.

                      About Me Master Gardener

                      Pros

                      • Accurate Instructions
                      • Hardy
                      • Healthy

                      Cons

                        Best Uses

                        • Garden
                        • Outdoors

                        Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

                        Will provide for monarch butterflies and beneficials

                        • Primary use:
                        • Personal

                        (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        4.0

                        The plant was superb. Well grown, well packed.

                        By 

                        from Albuquerque NM

                        About Me Professional Landscaper

                        Verified Reviewer

                        Pros

                        • Accurate Instructions
                        • Fragrant
                        • Hardy
                        • Healthy

                        Cons

                          Best Uses

                          • Garden

                          Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

                          Excellent butterfly plant

                          • Primary use:
                          • Personal

                          (14 of 14 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          5.0

                          Pretty and Easy to Grow

                          By 

                          from Erie, CO

                          About Me Avid Gardener

                          Pros

                          • Attractive
                          • Hardy
                          • Healthy

                          Cons

                            Best Uses

                            • Garden
                            • Outdoors

                            Comments about High Country Gardens Asclepias tuberosa - 5" Pot:

                            I bought six of these plants a few years ago and they have done amazing. They are planted in clay soil on western and southern exposure where we get 95 degree days in the summer and below zero in the winter. They have come back every year and do well with infrequent but deep watering throughout the hot summer months. They have a long flowering period and interesting seed pods that you can deadhead or leave on. Plus they are a food source for the Monarch larvae!

                            • Primary use:
                            • Personal

                            Displaying reviews 1-11

                            Back to top

                            Q & A

                            Suggested Companion Plants:

                            USDA Hardiness Planting Zones

                            To determine if a plant is sufficiently cold hardy, the USDA created numbered zones indicating winter low temperatures; the lower the zone number the colder the winter.

                            • If the coldest winter temperature expected in your area is -15°F (zone 5) then any plants rated zones 3-5 will survive the winter temperatures in your area.
                            • If you live in very warm winter areas (zones 9-11) plants with zones 3-4 ratings are not recommended. The lack of freezing winter temperatures do not provide a time for winter dormancy (rest).

                            Find Your Planting Zone:

                            Enter your Zip Code to find your USDA Planting Zone

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