If you need to improve your soil's drainage or if you have heavy clay soil, amend it by adding 4 inches of sand spread over the planting area. Those engaged in restoration are urged to consult the county distribution maps and to select species that are previously known to occur. Flowers bloom from June to September, but may not bloom until the second year. Without proper thinning, you will end up with weaker plants. University of California Press. Milkweed plants, in all their various forms, are the exclusive foodplant of Monarch butterflies, so gardeners can play an important role in monarch ecology, and hopefully their recovery. Planting Narrowleaf Milkweed Seeds. Midwest and Northeast. In most areas, when you plant seeds outside in fall, seeds can go through the cold stratification process naturally. Connect With Us. As a naive butterfly lover, I picked up a tropical milkweed plant this past summer at a local nursery without reading throughly into all the studies that recommend against it especially in California where I live. Narrow-leaf milkweed evolved in California so it is a generally drought tolerant plant. In fact, many California plants do not need a frost to trigger germination, but it is on a species by species basis. HISTORY & FOLKLORE Historically, various Native Americans throughout its range have used desert milkweed as a medicinal plant. California has a wonderful climate for growing vegetables, with a whopping 270 days between the last and first frost dates in the season. Build a Butterfly and Pollinator Garden in 7 Steps Educate others and ask them to take responsibility for their actions. See BONAP’s North American Plant Atlas for Asclepias. Whether to plant native milkweed or non-native milkweed in your garden has been a controversial topic. When emerging milkweeds have three to four sets of leaves, thin seedlings to 6 inches apart. ... That’s why migrate more than 3,000 miles each fall to Mexico or Southern California. Zones 2-8. Skip to content. Narrowleaf milkweed is a perennial flower native to parts of the western U.S. Plant seeds during the cool season of Zones 9 and 10. Leaves … I then gently tap the bottom of the seed tray on a flat surface to let the soil mix settle just a bit. Version Number _01 PROGRAMS. After you’ve sown the seeds, compact them into the soil (but don’t cover them) to provide good soil-to-seed contact. Early uses of California plants. Sign up for our Newsletter. The range of desert milkweed extends from western Arizona and southern Nevada, into southeastern California and Baja California, Sonora, and Sinaloa, Mexico. The Midwest … To ensure successful germination of milkweed seeds, plant them in a smooth, clump-free soil bed worked to a fine consistency using a rake or rototiller. A Milkweed in every yard! You can choose to direct sow seeds in a weed-free area of your garden or plant them in starter pots and transplant them outside. Most of the areas in which milkweed is found are frost freeze zones. Milkweed seeds require stratification-- cold treatment ... Plant milkweed seedlings outdoors, spacing them 1 to 2 feet apart in an area with well-drained soil and full sun exposure. Native Milkweed in California: Planting and Establishment. Get A FREE Catalog. Plant the seeds, watch the milkweed grow, and wait for monarch butterflies to arrive! When to Plant Milkweed seeds can be sown outdoors after the danger of frost has passed. Starting seeds indoors in winter. When to plant milkweed seeds depends on whether you’re growing milkweed from seeds or small plants. But now, as difficult as it is to believe, we are learning that this may not necessarily be true. The plant is commonly found growing in open fields, pastures and prairies. Happy growing! Take responsibility for your actions. Refer to the seed packets for special instructions on sowing the seeds. How to plant milkweed for monarch butterflies. Questions & Answers. Showy milkweed is native to much of the western half of North America. When tropical milkweed is planted in the coastal southern U.S. and California, these plants continue to flower and produce new leaves throughout the fall and winter, except during rare freeze events. In hopes to replace it In my garden this spring, I am looking for native variety seeds that may be growing in everyone’s gardens here in CA. It is best to plant species from your local area, adapted to the specific site conditions where the plants are to be grown. 1962. I’ll show you the right timing for collecting milkweed seeds from existing plants and how to sow the seeds. Here are some resources. Seeds and plants of selected Asclepias cultivars are available from many nurseries. 19-004. If the appearance of the plant is too weedy for your taste, grow milkweed plants in a hidden but sunny corner or at the back of a border. Planting Tropical Milkweed Seeds. Support the Xerces Society. In California it is found in the Sierras and Coast Ranges, from Tulare County to Modoc and Siskiyou Counties. Endangered Species Conservation. clicking on Plant Materials. Keep the planting bed moist until the seedlings become established. Serial Number. It is an important monarch butterfly caterpillar host plant. With deep purple flowers and white to gray fuzzy foliage this plant typically sprawls across the ground rather than growing upwards. Plant a seed today and change your backyard. Plant in the spring after the danger of frost is gone. About threats to the seed packets for special instructions on sowing the seeds seed! Also start stratified seeds indoors in late spring is one of the western U.S. plant seeds during the cool of! 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