Tropical Milkweed
Host Plant for Butterflies

Visit -- for Your Living Butterfly Needs


Lifecycle Facts

Raising Butterflies

Free Downloads

Butterfly Identification

Butterfly Parasitoids

Butterfly Enemies

Butterfly Disease

Butterfly Plants

Plant Pests

Butterfly Gardening


Odds and Ends

Ask Edith

Butterfly Plant Recipes

Asclepias curassavica
Butterfly Host or Larval Food Plant
Monarch, Queen, & Soldier

Scroll down for plant information.

Yellow tropical milkweed asclepias curassivaca

Yellow Tropical Milkweed

Asclepias curassavica
Red tropical milkweed asclepias curassivaca

Red Tropical Milkweed

Asclepias curassavica
Yellow aphids (Aphis nerii) on tropical milkweed (Asclepias curassivaca)

Yellow Aphids Aphis nerii

on Tropical Milkweed

Botanical Name:Asclepias curassavica

Common Names: Tropical Milkweed, Mexican Milkweed, Bloodflower, Butterfly Weed, Silkweed

Plant type: Herb

Zone: 9-12, all other zones as annual

Light: Sun to partial shade, best bloom in sun

Size: 36 inches

Water: Average

Soil: Best in rich garden soil but will grow in almost any soil

Seed ~ For long term storage of seed, keep your left-over seed in the refrigerator in a sealed baggie.
Cuttings ~ How to grow Tropical Milkweed from cuttings.

Bloom: Clusters

Pests: Yellow aphids, milkweed bugs, thrips, spider mites

For control of aphids, many gardeners use insecticidal soap. We found the safest and most effective means to control aphids is Malathion. Remove any caterpillars or eggs on your plant and place in a cardboard box temporarily. Spray your plant with Malathion according to instructions on label. Cover your plants immediately with a sheet or box. After 30 minutes, rinse your plant well with your water hose. After your plant has drip dried, replace your caterpillars on the plant. Any eggs can be placed in a tiny (3 inch) square or circle of material or tulle. Leave the material open on both ends. Paperclip the material (with the eggs) on the plant. When the caterpillars hatch, they will crawl off the material to the milkweed. Malathion does not become part of the plant and readily washes off.

Note: Host plant for Monarch, Queen, and Soldier

Note: Plant is poisonous. Sap is extremely painful in eyes.

Note: Spider mites are a danger to your plants. If you detect tiny red spider mites or webbing, visit Spider Mites.

Other site links for Monarch information are:
How to tell when your caterpillar is about to pupate.
How to tell when your caterpillar is about to emerge.
How to tell the difference between a Monarch and Queen chrysalis.
Caterpillar Predators
Ophryocystis electroskirrha; Monarch and Queen Disease
Monarch egg size
How to tell the difference between a male and female chrysalis
How to reattach a chrysalis after it falls.
How to raise butterflies from eggs, caterpillars, and/or chrysaslies.