Asclepias tuberosa L. is the correct and accepted scientific name for the Butterfly Weed. The genus and species were named and described by Carl von Linnaeus in the first volume of the first edition of Species Plantarum in 1753.
Plants of the World Online by Kew lists 206 accepted species in the Asclepias genus (as of 8-12-21 when I last updated this page). It is a member of the plant family Apocynaceae with 367 genera. Those numbers could change as updates are made on POWO.
The map on iNaturalist shows where members have made observations. Anyone can join and it is a great website to confirm and share your observations. The maps on iNaturalist are continually updated as members post new observations.
THERE ARE SEVERAL LINKS AT THE BOTTOM OF THE PAGE FOR FURTHER READING AND TO HELP WITH A BETTER POSITIVE ID.
I always like the bright reddish-orange flowers of the Butterfly Weed. There aren’t any growing on my farm and they really aren’t as common in my neck of the woods as other Milkweed. In 2013, I was surprised to see a small colony growing in a neighbors pasture in the back of my farm. Well, of course I climbed over the fence. They are growing hit and miss in areas along a few highways I travel on but I had never stopped for photos. Then, I took a few photos on a backroad in 2018. While working in 2020, I saw a flower bed in front of a vacant house with plants that had gone to seed. I had an envelope in the car, so I stopped and grabbed some as well as taking several photos… I have learned to take my camera with me just about everywhere I go during the summer. 🙂
I apologize for not writing descriptions at the moment, but I have A LOT of wildflower pages to make and publish before I start getting too busy. I update this site and add new pages over the winter but I didn’t get finished. SO, I decided to just make the page with photos and links to other sites for better plant ID. I will be taking more photos over the summer and posting but I will also be working on these pages as I have time.
I have enjoyed photographing and learning about the many wildflowers growing on the farm and other areas. My farm is in Windsor, Missouri in Pettis County (Henry County is across the street and Benton and Johnson aren’t far away). I have grown over 500 different plants and identified over 100 species of wildflowers (most have pages listed on the right side of the page). I am not an expert, botanist, or horticulturalist. I just like growing, photographing, and writing about my experience. I rely on several websites for ID and a few horticulturalists I contact if I cannot figure them out. Wildflowers can be somewhat variable from location to location, so sometimes it gets a bit confusing. If you see I have made an error, please let me know so I can correct what I have written.
I hope you found this page useful and be sure to check the links below for more information. They were written by experts and provide much more information. Some sites may not be up-to-date but they are always a work in progress. If you can, I would appreciate it if you would click on the “Like” below and leave a comment. It helps us bloggers stay motivated. You can also send an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would enjoy hearing from you especially if you notice something is a bit whacky.
FOR FURTHER READING:
PLANTS OF THE WORLD ONLINE (GENUS/SPECIES)
INTERNATIONAL PLANT NAMES INDEX (GENUS/SPECIES)
WORLD FLORA ONLINE (GENUS/SPECIES)
USDA PLANTS DATABASE
USDA PLANT GUIDE
MISSOURI BOTANICAL GARDEN
MSU-MIDWEST WEEDS AND WILDFLOWERS
MISSOURI DEPARTMENT OF CONSERVATION
KANSAS WILDFLOWERS AND GRASSES
PFAF(PLANTS FOR A FUTURE)
LADY BIRD JOHNSON WILDFLOWER CENTER
FRIENDS OF THE WILDFLOWER GARDEN
NORTH CAROLINA STATE UNIVERSITY
U.S. FOREST SERVICE
MASTER GARDENERS OF NORTHERN VIRGINIA
UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN
NOTE: The figures may not match on these websites. It depends on when and how they make updates and when their sources make updates (and if they update their sources or even read what they say). Well, I don’t always read all the information from the links I provide either. Some websites have hundreds and even many thousands of species to keep up with. Accepted scientific names change periodically and it can be hard to keep with as well. In my opinion, Plants of the World Online by Kew is the most reliable and up-to-date plant database and they make updates on a regular basis. I make updates at least once a year and when I write new pages and add new photos but I do get behind. We are all a work in progress. 🙂