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Showy Milkweed Plants

There are many species of milkweed. Showy milkweed is a variety of milkweed that is a California native that grows well in our Bay Area climate. We have 4" pots of certified organic showy milkweed seedlings available for sale at Cloverfield Organic Farm now.

Showy milkweed is a hardy perennial in many parts of California. It has pretty pink flowers, sturdy grey-green foliage, and fluffy seeds. Showy milkweed comes back every year after 'dying off' in the Winter. It doesn't actually die, but the plant goes dormant for a few weeks. Each year the plant expands its roots and gets bigger.

Learn more about this important native plant here on Calscape:

It is considered somewhat controversial, but some entomologists believe it is important to plant species of milkweed that are indigenous to an area to protect the ecology of the insects and birds that feed on them. If the wrong types of milkweed are planted they can possibly grow out of sync with the local area weather and climate and disrupt the health and migration of the Monarch butterflies that feed on them.

The showy milkweed seeds were cold-stratified in a refrigerator by wrapping them in lightly-moistened paper towels for about 5-6 weeks. This year's milkweed seeds were popped into the refrigerator in mid-March. The cold stratification is needed to break their seed dormancy and allow them to germinate well. The cold-stratified seeds were flat seeded at the end of April, and we pricked them out into 4" pots in mid-June. They are now ready for sale to customers as they have recovered from transplant shock and have rooted into their new pots.

Our pots of showy milkweed sell for $6, consistent with the other plants of this size that we grow at farm. By growing showy milkweed each of us supports the Monarch butterflies and other wildlife that depend on them. We hope you please come to get one and plant it to help conserve the natural ecology of our region.

All our plants and crops we grow are USDA organic certified by CCOF and the Real Organic Project.

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