Be aware, and never eat a plant you can’t positively identify. Name: Brenden Reinhart Flushing Michigan (Zone 6b) bhart90 Jun 1, 2016 8:41 PM CST.  Seems like a lot of work, bringing water to a boil over and over like that. Unfortunately, milkweed often has a bad reputation.  More advanced foragers note that the customary double boiling process is unnecessary, but I always double boil milkweed.  Dogbane’s flowers look much different than milkweed, so any confusion would probably come in earlier stages of development.  Both plants are weedy, but milkweed seems more familiar to me–although dogbane isn’t uncommon. Box 444 The flowers also look quite different. Leaves of swamp milkweed are long, up to 8 inches long, but are also narrow, no more than 2 inches wide. Planting Time: Milkweed plants can be planted in spring or fall.  I would be sure not to separate the seeds after taking them out of the pod–this is worth repeating, because remember, if you separate all of the seeds at first, you’ll be defluffing hundreds of individual seeds. Dogbane has more of a reddish stem when mature and develops many branches. White swamp milkweed. P.O. Dogbane Swamp Common Milkweed Differences.  Once the plant gets larger than seen in the photo below, its flowers and seedpods can be utilized.  After positively identifying this plant, it’s generally it’s good to start off by eating just small amounts of the cooked plant.  My coworker Whitney and I would line up the seeds in heart and star shapes and watch the fire run along the seeds like dominoes. The flowers of dogbane form in flat clusters, where milkweed flowers form in ball shaped clusters. [1] Some of these species are exotics (not native to Montana) [2] and some species have been designated as Species of Concern . Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.  Historically butterfly milkweed, also known as butterfly-weed, or Pleurisy Root has been considered medicinal–according to alternative medicine expert Karen Burgeron, perhaps the most valuable alternative medicine of all American species. Helps to see it. And then there are the seed pods. Milkweed plants (asclepias) are bigger than dogbane and their leaves are broader.  I’ve read that swamp milkweed can be used much in the same way as common milkweed, but I’ve never used it, and don’t recommend it–I could be wrong, but it seems to be getting more and more scarce. Dogbane (Apocynum cannabinum) is a North American native plant found throughout the continental United States and southern Canada.It is commonly found in wooded areas along the banks of lakes and streams. Milkweed seeds are expensive. It grows easily in a home garden with average to moist soil—it is nearly exploding in my own back yard in heavy clay soil. I have read that butterfly milkweed is poisonous and emetic–that’s enough to keep me from eating it!  In general, boiling eliminates bitter alkaloids, cardiac glycosides, and its sappy latex. Native Americans used the fibers inside the stems to make string, thread, rope, baskets, snares, netting, and clothing. Only during the spring before flower buds form can milkweed be mistaken for its mildly poisonous neighbor, dogbane.  It prefers dry soil.  Just before passing Lake Shore Drive on my bike, I noticed a patch of restored land I’ve never worked on with the Park District.  There are other varieties of asclepias, including swamp milkweed, asclepius incarnata, and butterfly milkweed, asclepius tuberosa. Learn more about milkweed species and characteristics in this article.  Then store seeds in the refrigerator over the winter in airtight plastic bags, or plant immediately in the fall. It has milky sap, and the leaves look a lot like milkweed leaves. Strain, and be sure to press out all remaining liquid. Phone: (330) 963-6243. Unlike most herbs, it prefers wet locations.. Swamp Milkweed Asclepias incarnata Found in all kinds of wet and swampy ground. Swamp milkweed can be easily distinguished from other milkweeds with pink flowers by its long narrow leaves. You can plant them closer and then thin the plants as they grow in, or, plant Swamp Milkweed and its cultivars between 30” and 36” apart. How Poisonous Is Milkweed to Humans?. There are several videos on youtube about this. Milkweeds love Michigan, and several butterfly milkweeds are lurking just beneath our field of vision, hidden here behind curtains of grass. Stems smooth, tall, flexible, branching. Clasping-leaf dogbane, Apocynum cannabinum There are at least 28 members of the dogbane, gentian and milkweed order, Gentianales , found in Montana . All parts of milkweed will ooze a white, milky latex when cut. And milkweed is thicker, stouter, bigger leaves.  Well, perhaps the fire strengthens the seeds. Asclepias syriaca, commonly called common milkweed, butterfly flower, silkweed, silky swallow-wort, and Virginia silkweed, is a species of flowering plant.It is in the genus Asclepias, the milkweeds.This species is native to southern Canada and of much of the conterminous eastern U.S., east of the Rocky Mountains, excluding the drier parts of the prairies. Dogbane is a plant that greatly resembles milkweed. If it's hallow, you have milkweed. Milkweed has hollow stems and dogbane has solid stems (thank you Jodi and Linda for these tips). The Dogbane is also poisonous. Butterfly milkweed have oblong, narrow leaves and fuzzy stems. Photo Guide : Apocynum cannabinum (Indian Hemp Dogbane) This plant is frequently mistaken for milkweed because of its milky sap and general similarity to Asclepias syriaca, especially in early spring.Although Monarch larvae will take a few nibbles of Apocynum leaves, they are unable to continue feeding on the plant and invariably die.  I think if I was doing this on my own and didn’t need to plant a bajillion seeds over acres of land, I would do things more simply. Dogbane is a native plant that likes to grow in similar areas as milkweed. milkweed to avoid harvesting pods from similar plants such as hemp dogbane and swamp milkweed. Twinsburg, OH 44087. Common milkweed flowers are pinkish, large and ball shaped, whereas dogbane flowers are whitish green and in … It is easy to distinguish from common milkweed and Sullivant's milkweed, but it does resemble butterfly weed quite a bit. Small Milkweed Bug (Lygaeus kalmii) nymphs on Indian Hemp Dogbanes even have a beetle named after them, the Dogbane Beetle ( Chrysochus auratus ). Since the protection offered by sequestering these chemicals in parts of their bodies is the reason Monarchs have evolved to specialize on Milkweeds, maybe they can evolve to use dogbanes, too. The leaves are more “waxy” on the milkweed than the dogbane.  It is commonly found as a roadside weed, but doesn’t reseed as easily as common milkweed. Brown-belted bumble bees seem to love common milkweed.  Swamp milkweed is one of my favorite plants, though I haven’t seen much of it this year.  There are a few varieties of apocynum, or dogbane, and all are poisonous. Dogbane and milkweed are placed within the same family of plants (the dogbane family — Apocynaceae), and both plants share similar features.  But I question to what degree. I can get over 12 feet of basswood inner bark but it's not close to the strength of dogbane or milkweed. Milkweed's big balls of dusky pink blossoms and compared to the tiny white to pink flowers of dogbane, the Dogbane is not a showy plant. Stems: Erect, mostly solitary, simple to branced above, stout, glabrous or with lines of hairs extending downward from leaf bases.  The plant is commonly called Indian Hemp. Have You Wondered What Milkweed Tastes Like? Butterfly milkweed is orange, with very similar flowers to common milkweed. It is in the same plant family as milkweed. Dogbane will also branch out, milkweed does not.  I’ve seen flower buds  just opening well into summer, but for the most part, the upright-positioned seed pods start to form early to mid-summer.  Only during the spring before flower buds form can milkweed be mistaken for its mildly poisonous neighbor, dogbane. Monarch butterflies lay their eggs on just one type of plant, and that’s milkweed (genus Asclepias). Swampostor!  I’ve never experienced any ill effects from milkweed. Not Milkweed Flowers. Brightly colored swamp milkweed leaf beetles (Labidomera clivicollis, family Chrysomelidae) are one of my favorites; partly because they are somewhat rare.   As far as I can see, the most common is apocynum cannabinum; Apocynum means “away dog!” and cannabinum means “like hemp” because of its use in making cording. A few sources (Natural History Museum; The Book of Swamp and Bog by John Eastman) say that Monarchs may use Spreading Dogbane as a caterpillar food plant. I finished my second dogbane bowstring the other week.  To be honest, any plant that’s been boiled several minutes will taste somewhat bland and mushy. Flowers July to August. A Dogbane has opposite oblong leaves 4" long and white sap, Dogbane later develops branches off the main stalk and a Milkweed does not.  It has bright pink leaves and looks similar, if not larger than the butterfly milkweed pictured below. When in doubt, don’t eat common milkweed. They have no clue what happened.… I've made all of 3 strings, and the Swamp Milkweed is kicking my arse.....might oughta just listen to Holiday, Im liable to get ya hurt. Tinker’s Creek Watershed Partners  Both plants have oppositely-oriented leaves and bleed a white milky latex when cut.  You will want to remove the white fluff from the seeds to increase chance of germination. Milkweeds are found throughout North and South America, and several are cultivated as ornamentals.  I believe we have one here, dressed in a fuzzy vest! There is a slight reddish tinge to the vein that runs through the middle of the leaf, dividing it in two.  This would make quite a show, and was a fun way to spend an afternoon at work! Flowers mostly terminal (positioned at the tops of the stems), in many loose umbels (each rounded cluster arises from the same point); pink or rarely white, with a delicate fragrance. The Pink Swamp Milkweed, being a milkweed, is important support for the Monarch butterflies But it is also a stunning perennial wildlfower and therefore deserving of a place in the perennial border.  When identifying the young plant, it may be helpful to use a magnifying glass to inspect stem for tiny hairs.  Interestingly butterfly milkweed does not produce a milky sap, either. Small Milkweed Bug nymphs feed on dogbane seeds in addition to milkweeds, as well as the seeds of some other plants.  As storm clouds rolled in overhead, I rolled out. But the big one here, cut the stem.  Prairie plants like fire, right?  Here comes the tricky part: when I worked in the Natural Areas department of the Park District, we would burn the fluff with a lighter. It was a cold day at the beach.  The unopened buds a lot like broccoli. Leaves: Mostly opposite, ascending to spreading, lanceolate, 1.2 to 6 inches long, 1/5 to 1.8 inches wide, thin, pliable, sparsely hairy on … Notice the opposite leaf pattern and symmetry of asclepias syriaca, Common Milkweed. Dogbane also exudes a milky latex when cut. Locate common milkweed stands for seed pod collection beside roadways, in pastures, meadows, along railroad tracks, bike paths, highway medians, agricultural field margins, vacant land, cultivated Confusing plant look-alikes: Milkweed and Dogbane - YouTube Despite their common name, both the adults and larvae feed on the leaves of several members of the dogbane family. Milkweed, genus of about 140 species of herbaceous perennial plants in the dogbane family (Apocynaceae). Been able to positively identify dogbane, and its sappy latex string, thread, rope, baskets,,! 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