Asclepias curassavica 'Silky Red'
Asclepias curassavica 'Silky Red'
Asclepias curassavica 'Silky Red'

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Asclepias curassavica 'Silky Red'

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(Silky Red Bloodflower) Vivid red and gold clusters of tiny, star-shaped flowers contrast handsomely with the dark green, lance-shaped leaves of Asclepias curassavica 'Silky Red." The Monarch Butterfly is drawn to for nectar and as a host plant for its eggs.

Common name This is the non-scientific name used for a plant. A plant may have several common names, depending on the gardener's location. To further confuse the matter, a common name may be shared by several completely different plants. At Flowers by the Sea, we rely on the scientific name to identify our plants and avoid confusion. Silky Red Bloodflower
USDA Zones The U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones indicate the temperature zones where a plant is likely to thrive. It is determined by the average annual winter minimum temperature. Actual winter temperatures may be higher or lower than the average. 9 -11
Size (h/w/fh) The anticipated mature size of the plant: Height, Width & Flower Height. 48"/36"/48"
Exposure This is the average amount of sunlight that a plant needs to thrive. Generally, full sun exposure is 6 or more hours of direct sun daily while partial shade is less than 4 hours of sun or dappled shade all day. Plants may tolerate more sunlight in cooler climates and need afternoon shade in extremely hot climates. Full sun
Soil type This is the kind of soil that a plant needs to thrive. Most plants require a well-drained soil that allows the water to soak into the soil without becoming soggy. Sandy and clay soils can be improved by digging in compost to improve drainage. Average
Water needs Plants have specific water requirements. Water loving means the plant needs regular watering to keep the soil moist. Average generally indicates applying 1 inch of water per week, or watering when the soil is dry to a depth of 3 to 4 inches. One inch of water is equal to 5 gallons per square yard of soil surface. Water loving
Pot size This is the size of the pot your plant will arrive in. All will be well rooted & branched and ready to grow when planted. Our STANDARD pot is 3 1/2 inches across and 4 inches deep and have a volume of 1.0 pints or 473 ml. Standard
Container plant? "Yes" indicates that this plant can be successfully grown as a container plant. Yes
Mature height The mature height of this plant in average conditions. 3 to 4 feet
Mature spread The mature width of this plant in average conditions. 2 to 3 feet
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  • Asclepias curassavica 'Silky Red'
Degree of Difficulty
Degree of Difficulty
This plant is easy to grow in a variety of conditions.
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(Silky Red Bloodflower) Vivid red and gold clusters of tiny, star-shaped flowers contrast handsomely with the dark green, lance-shaped leaves of this milkweed. The endangered Monarch butterfly is drawn to milkweeds including Asclepias curassavica 'Silky Red' for nectar and as a host plant for its eggs. Milkweeds are the only plants their caterpillars will eat. Consuming powerful chemicals in the leaves protects them as babies and adults against predators for whom the chemicals are toxic.

Silky Red -- also commonly known as Tropical Milkweed and Mexican Butterfly Weed -- is native to South America and a perennial in USDA zones where winter is warm. Due to loving moisture, it is a good solution for sunny, damp areas of your yard. However, this milkweed grows well with average watering based on local conditions. In zones with colder winters, it is an attractive annual for containers and can be cut back in late autumn to overwinter indoors. Just reduce watering, and place it in a cool yet sunny location.

Unlike Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca), this species doesn't have a taproot. So, it's easier to control the plant's spread. Much has been written about the problems as well as the benefits Tropical Milkweeds present for Monarchs. Where these plants persist outdoors during winter, Monarchs may not complete their migration to Mexico. Prolonged growth and flowering creates difficulties including the spread of a protozoan parasite that harms Monarchs. To avoid this problem in warm regions, cut all types of Tropical Milkweed to the ground during early autumn and winter.

Please note: This is a seed-grown strain and may vary in flower color from plant to plant.