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Butterfly Weed

| Aquatic Plants, Butterfly, Invasive
15 Aug 2011

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Showy Milkweed (Asclepias speciosa
Photo by Larry Halverson

This pretty milkweed is not listed in BC but is considered invasive. Unlike other milkweeds it can found in wetlands.   This one was photographed blooming on August 9th by the wetlands near Athalmer. 
Showy milkweed is toxic. It possesses moderate concentrations of cardenolides, and can poison or even kill grazing animals. However this weed has saved the lives of many Monarch Butterflies. Monarchs feed on the milkweed and toxins they ingest gives the  butterfly its defence. Most predators have learned that the monarch butterfly makes a poisonous snack. So the plant is also called the Butterfly weed.

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Columbia Wetlands Stewardship Partners