East Tennessee Wildflower Of The Day: Four-leaved Milkweed

By Denese. Filed in East TN  |  
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I have sooo many wildflower photos to share that I’ve decided to post a different one each day –hope you all like them!

Four-leaved Milkweed (Asclepias  quadrifolia)

Four-leaved Milkweed 2a small

This dainty little milkweed is found in upland forests, usually on dry, rocky slopes. Their range is from Ontario to Vermont, south to Georgia and west to Oklahoma and Kansas.

Four-leaved Milkweed small

It grows 1-2 feet high and rounded clusters of pale-pink blooms appear in late spring to early summer. The leaves are in pairs, except for the middle set, which is whorl of four. The white, downy seeds are contained in 2-3 inch thin, pointy seed pods which form after blooming.

These are beautiful here in the Pawpaw Holler when they bloom and my children enjoy picking the seed pods when they start to open –the seeds float away like little parachutes! I’ll post some pictures of the seed pods later in the year.

Four-leaved milkweed can be found in The Great Smoky Mountains National Park on Chestnut-tops Trail (across from the “Y” at the Townsend entrance to the park).

More Information

USDA Plants Profile: Asclepias quadrifolia

Connecticut Botanical Society: Four-leaved Milkweed (Asclepias quadrifolia) –more images

Biodiversity of Great Smoky Mountains National Park: Asclepias quadrifolia Jacq., Four-leaf Milkweed

Plants For A Future Database: Asclepias quadrifolia –cultivation and propagation information

Where To Buy Four-leaved Milkweed

Enchanters Garden

Hydroponics Online



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