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Asclepias incarnata, the swamp milkweed, rose milkweed, rose milkflower, swamp silkweed, or white Indian hemp, is a herbaceous perennial plant species native to North America. It grows in damp through wet soils and also is cultivated as a garden plant for its flowers, which attract butterflies and other pollinators with nectar. Like most other milkweeds, it has latex containing toxic chemicals, a characteristic that repels insects and other herbivorous animals. Swamp milkweed is an upright, 100 to 150 cm (39 to 59 in) tall plant, growing from thick, fleshy, white roots. Typically, its stems are branched and the clump forming plants emerge in late spring after most other plants have begun growth for the year. The oppositely arranged leaves are 7.5 to 15 cm (3 to 6 in) long and 1 to 4 cm (1⁄2 to 1+1⁄2 in) wide and are narrow and lance-shaped, with the ends tapering to a sharp point. The plants bloom in early through mid-summer, producing small, fragrant, pink to mauve (sometimes white) colored flowers in rounded umbellate racemes. The flower color varies from darker shades of purple through soft, pinkish purple and a white flowering form exists as well. The actinomorphic flowers have five reflexed petals and an elevated central crown. After blooming, green follicles, approximately 12 cm (4+3⁄4 in) long, are produced that when ripe, split open. They then release light or dark brown, flat seeds that are attached to silver-white, silky hairs which catch the wind. This natural mechanism for seed dispersal is similar to that used by other milkweed species.
Path-side bordered by a protected reservoir on one side and a restored prairie/wetland on the other
Milkweed is a critical species for the Monarch Butterfly caterpillars.