Milkweed for Monarchs

Monarchs need milkweed. This post gives local examples of three popular milkweed choices.

Monarch butterflies need milkweed because milkweed is the only thing their caterpillars can eat.

So milkweed is where mother monarch lays her eggs.

What follows are examples of the three most common types of milkweed in our area:

  • Common milkweed (asclepias syriaca)
  • Swamp milkweed (asclepias incarnata)
  • Butterfly weed (asclepia tuberosa)


Pictured below is common milkweed adorning the flagpole at Creasey Mahan Nature Preserve in Goshen.


Here is swamp milkweed at Landis Lakes, a subdivision in East Louisville. Swamp milkweed does well in wet soil. Notice the pink bloom with white tips.


This is swamp milkweed in Alan K. Draught Park in St. Matthews.


This is common milkweed at Meadowview Farm in Crestwood. Notice the broad leaf and the pink-gray bloom.


This is butterfly weed at the Parklands. Notice the narrow leaf and the orange bloom.


This is butterfly weed at Idlewild Butterfly Farm, on Logan Street in Louisville.


Here is butterfly weed at an area parochial school.


This is a monarch caterpillar. She thanks you for providing her with a meal.