Asclepias exaltata, Poke Milkweed

Poke Milkweed leaves resemble those of Pokeweed, Phytolacca americana (not native to MN)

Poke Milkweed is a favorite and although I would like to say it's because of its flowers or form, it is neither. What attracts me to Poke is that it is truly unique as a woodland milkweed. It is a favorite of Monarchs, often choosing it over many other species growing in full sun. Some folks have said this milkweed is difficult, but don't let that stop you. 

Poke Milkweed is a woodland or savanna species and requires mostly shade, particularly in the afternoon if the sunlight it receives is direct as opposed to dappled. I have it growing in three locations and all three appear to be quite well. It is growing among Woodland Strawberry and Pennsylvania Sedge in a savanna-like location, at the top of a hill, where the soils are drier and a fallen oak has offered a fair amount of mid day sun. It is also among several Blue Wood Asters in a sloping morning-sun bed comprised of sand, gravel and clay that receives moisture from a roof above. The last, most vigorous patch, is in a mostly shaded, morning sun, woodland edge with poor clay soils that remain moist, but sloped to help drainage.

You may not be able to match these, but if you live in a savanna like setting or have a morning sun woodland edge or garden, I suspect Poke Milkweed will be given a good shot at doing well.

Blooms: white with pink-lavender blush, June into July

Height: 3 to 5 feet

Conditions: pt shade to dappled shade, moist-medium to medium-dry

Poke Milkweed flowers exhibit subtle tones of lavender or pink.
A vigorous patch of Poke Milkweed, just about to bloom, surrounded by Hop Sedge.