There is a slight reddish tinge to the vein that runs through the middle of the leaf, dividing it in two. Many people (including entomologists) have mistakenly given dogbane to their caterpillars only to watch them starve to death.  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.  There are other varieties of asclepias, including swamp milkweed, asclepius incarnata, and butterfly milkweed, asclepius tuberosa. Solid, dogbane. Butterfly milkweed is orange, with very similar flowers to common milkweed.  This is not my favorite textural experience, but seems like standard method for many wild foods. In this video, I help you discern between common milkweed and dogbane. 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.  A warm infusion of the root extract can be applied as a warm poultice to burns, skin ulcers, and wounds. Brown-belted bumble bees seem to love common milkweed. Helps to see it.  According to many sources, the leaves and stem are best eaten when just unfurling, or under 8 inches in height. Swampostor! Only during the spring before flower buds form can milkweed be mistaken for its mildly poisonous neighbor, dogbane. Not Milkweed Flowers. This free-flowering native milkweed usually only grows 12-24 inches tall, continually sending up stalks topped with white blooms that often have a pink blush.  Seems like a lot of work, bringing water to a boil over and over like that. While awareness is rising around the… I make a point not to eat much milkweed, since it’s a native plant that attracts pollinators and Monarchs.  Once the plant gets larger than seen in the photo below, its flowers and seedpods can be utilized. Swamp Milkweed eventually matures to forms clumps up to 36" across. [1] Some of these species are exotics (not native to Montana) [2] and some species have been designated as Species of Concern . (You can unsubscribe anytime), Akron Website Designers | Ohio Web Technologies, Natural Areas in Tinker’s Creek watershed, Maintaining Stormwater Control Measures Guidance for Private Owners & Operators, Business, Individual, and Family Membership, Dogbane Swamp Common Milkweed Differences.  Milkweed is poisonous raw and some people can react negatively even after eating the cooked plant. Dogbane is another plant that people often mistake for milkweed, but its leaves bear a closer resemblance to common milkweed.  It has bright pink leaves and looks similar, if not larger than the butterfly milkweed pictured below.   Dogbane has more of a reddish stem when mature and develops many branches. And, simply because I love black and white plant photography: Besides looking really unique, this plant attracts interesting and colorful bugs including red milkweed beetle, western honey bees, and most famously, Monarch butterflies. Dogbane is a native plant that likes to grow in similar areas as milkweed. Dogbane is toxic, however, while common milkweed is edible.  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. In the early spring newly growing plants of dogbane look almost identical to milkweed. A milkweed bark rots quickly. But the big one here, cut the stem. Milkweed species in the genus Asclepias contain cardiac glycosides that are poisonous to humans, but they pose the most danger to … 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. Quest for fire.  The plant is commonly called Indian Hemp. Dogbane will also branch out, milkweed does not. P.O. Flowers July to August. When mature, the dogbane stem branches in the upper portion of the plant. Dogbane also exudes a milky latex when cut.  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. Some species of dogbane grows flowers that closely resemble milkweed flowers. Milkweeds are found throughout North and South America, and several are cultivated as ornamentals. Stems: Erect, mostly solitary, simple to branced above, stout, glabrous or with lines of hairs extending downward from leaf bases. If you’ll be utilizing flowers or buds, inspect for tiny larvae. All parts of milkweed will ooze a white, milky latex when cut. Milkweed seeds are expensive. Gardening for Butterflies, Birds and Bees forum: Dogbane vs. Milkweed.  If you’ve boiled in a couple changes of water and the plant is bitter, you have the wrong plant! If it's hallow, you have milkweed. Milkweed, genus of about 140 species of herbaceous perennial plants in the dogbane family (Apocynaceae). Even though it is found in wet meadows and swamp margins, it is also happy in a well drained upland garden soil in […] And then there are the seed pods. Dogbane is a plant that greatly resembles milkweed.  Only during the spring before flower buds form can milkweed be mistaken for its mildly poisonous neighbor, dogbane. How Poisonous Is Milkweed to Humans?.  Dogbane’s flowers look much different than milkweed, so any confusion would probably come in earlier stages of development.  Both plants have oppositely-oriented leaves and bleed a white milky latex when cut.  Swamp milkweed is one of my favorite plants, though I haven’t seen much of it this year.  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. Female blue milkweed beetles are polyandrous, meaning they mate with multiple partners. Milkweeds love Michigan, and several butterfly milkweeds are lurking just beneath our field of vision, hidden here behind curtains of grass. A Dogbane has opposite oblong leaves 4" long and white sap, Dogbane later develops branches off the main stalk and a Milkweed does not. CONTACT US. One blue milkweed beetle earned an honorable mention in the University of Florida Book of Insect Records for this behavior. Habit: Flower: Leaf:  I’ve read of people changing water 4-5 times with smaller boiling intervals. She is believed to have mated 60 times.  Be aware, and never eat a plant you can’t positively identify.  But eating plants does allow us to get to know them more intimately, and milkweed is a tender, relatively worthwhile forage. Tinker’s Creek Watershed Partners Strain, and be sure to press out all remaining liquid. Your plant has green stems, so I suspect it is milkweed, not dogbane. Swamp milkweed can be easily distinguished from other milkweeds with pink flowers by its long narrow leaves.  There are a few varieties of apocynum, or dogbane, and all are poisonous. I finished my second dogbane bowstring the other week.  Well, perhaps the fire strengthens the seeds. It is in the same plant family as milkweed. Planting Time: Milkweed plants can be planted in spring or fall. However, the stems will have a reddish tint, that is not hard to see. Common milkweed has oppositely oriented, oval, slightly fuzzy leaves and unique little 5 petaled flowers that grow in radial clusters like pom-poms. Notice the opposite leaf pattern and symmetry of asclepias syriaca, Common Milkweed.  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. Dogbane and milkweed are placed within the same family of plants (the dogbane family — Apocynaceae), and both plants share similar features. 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.  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.  In general, boiling eliminates bitter alkaloids, cardiac glycosides, and its sappy latex. Branching dogbane shoots, Apocynum cannabinum, are more slender than milkweed shoots, have a slightly red tinge, and are smooth, but also have opposite, oval shaped leaves that are slightly fuzzy. 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 to avoid harvesting pods from similar plants such as hemp dogbane and swamp milkweed. When in doubt, don’t eat common milkweed. I have been able to positively identify dogbane, growing near Lake Monona, in Yahara Park, located here in Madison, Wisconsin.  It is commonly found as a roadside weed, but doesn’t reseed as easily as common milkweed. The larvae of blue milkweed beetles are known to be obligate root feeders on milkweed and dogbane. Box 444 Twinsburg, OH 44087. Follow down to earth raw on WordPress.com, An Easy No-Rinse Cleanser You can Make in Minutes, In Case You’ve Ever Wished to Eat Hairspray.  Like many medicinal plants, it is said to have specific action on the lungs–but reports are vague, and I could find little evidence of how exactly people use it for lung afflictions. Brightly colored swamp milkweed leaf beetles (Labidomera clivicollis, family Chrysomelidae) are one of my favorites; partly because they are somewhat rare.  I’ve never experienced any ill effects from milkweed. Swamp Milkweed $ 6.00.  The unopened buds a lot like broccoli.  Upon noticing a couple of tiny milkweeds, I was reminded of what limited time I have to enjoy the shoots and leaves of this plant.  More advanced foragers note that the customary double boiling process is unnecessary, but I always double boil milkweed. 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To receive emails from Tinkers Creek Watershed partners, don ’ t uncommon familiar to dogbane...