Alphabetical Plant Listing

Asclepias subulata (Rush Milkweed)

Rush Milkweed, Desert Milkweed, Ajamete, Skeleton Milkweed


Adding vertical lines to the landscape, Asclepias subulata (Rush Milkweed) is an evergreen perennial forming a striking bouquet of ascending, gray-green, succulent stems. The stems bear small linear leaves, 2 in. long (5 cm), only after rain and are naked the rest of the time. From mid-spring to winter, small clusters of creamy-white flowers with reflexed corollas are borne at the stem tips. Opening from creamy yellow buds, they are a great nectar source for butterflies, bees and other pollinating insects. They are also a larval food source for the caterpillars of monarch and queen butterfly species. The blossoms give way to narrow, smooth, glabrous pods that open to release their white plumed seeds. Native to the Southwestern U.S., this perennial wildflower is drought and heat tolerant and makes an attractive desert landscape plant with its interesting shape and unusual flower clusters that attract butterflies and other insects. Rush Milkweed is the only evergreen milkweed native to the U.S.

Milkweed plants are critical to the monarch butterflies survival, whose population in North America has plummeted by 90% in the last 20 years. By planting milkweed in your own garden, you can help reverse the fortune of these beautiful insects!

  • Grows up to 2-4 ft. tall and wide (60-120 cm).
  • Thrives in full sun in sandy, well-drained soils. Water infrequently to occasionally. Drought tolerant once established. Shade tolerant under desert conditions.
  • Vital ingredient of butterfly gardens. Perfect for the sunny dry garden.
  • No serious pest or disease issues.
  • Propagate by seed or stem cuttings.
  • This plant is slightly poisonous and its sap is a skin irritant.
  • Native to California, Arizona and Nevada, northern Mexico.

Learn How To Plant, Care and Grow Splendid Asclepias

Mostly native to the U.S. and Canada, Asclepias include over 100 species of evergreen or deciduous perennials adorned with clusters of small, interestingly shaped blooms that are irresistible to butterflies. Attractive and easy to grow, they shine in many gardens. However, some basic rules need to be followed to enjoy their splendid flowers.Read More

Not sure which Asclepias to pick?
Compare All Asclepias

Buy Asclepias subulata (Rush Milkweed)

Requirements

Hardiness 9 – 11
Climate Zones 11, 12, 13
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Asclepias
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spread 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spacing 36" – 48" (90cm – 120cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen
Native Plants United States, California, Southwest, Nevada, Arizona
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil, Rocky Soil
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders
Garden Styles Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage, Mediterranean Garden, Prairie and Meadow

Buy Plants

Great Plant Combination Ideas with Asclepias

Guides with Asclepias


By Jared Quentin, Dominic Gentilcore PhD, Shutterstock

While every effort has been made to describe these plants accurately, please keep in mind that height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates. The description of these plants has been written based on numerous outside resources.


Requirements

Hardiness 9 – 11
Climate Zones 11, 12, 13
Plant Type Perennials
Plant Family Asclepias
Exposure Full Sun
Season of Interest Spring (Mid,Late)
Summer (Early,Mid,Late)
Fall
Winter
Height 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spread 2' – 4' (60cm – 120cm)
Spacing 36" – 48" (90cm – 120cm)
Water Needs Low
Maintenance Low
Soil Type Loam, Sand
Soil pH Acid, Alkaline, Neutral
Soil Drainage Well-Drained
Characteristics Showy, Evergreen
Native Plants United States, California, Southwest, Nevada, Arizona
Tolerance Drought, Dry Soil, Rocky Soil
Attracts Butterflies
Garden Uses Beds and Borders
Garden Styles Gravel and Rock Garden, Informal and Cottage, Mediterranean Garden, Prairie and Meadow

Great Plant Combination Ideas with Asclepias

Guides with Asclepias

Plant Calculator

How many Asclepias subulata (Rush Milkweed) do I need for my garden?

%
ft
ft

Your Shopping List

Plant Quantity
Asclepias subulata (Rush Milkweed)

Find your Hardiness Zone

Find your Climate Zone

Find your Heat Zone

Join Gardenia.net

Create a membership account to save your garden designs and to view them on any device.

Becoming a contributing member of Gardenia is easy and can be done in just a few minutes. If you provide us with your name, email address and the payment of a modest $25 annual membership fee, you will become a full member, enabling you to design and save up to 25 of your garden design ideas.

Join now and start creating your dream garden!

Create a New Collection

Optional. For your reference.


Move Selected Plants to a Different Collection


Delete Collection

This field is required.