Plant: Perennial herb; stems erect to spreading, sparingly branched from near the base, 10-40(-60) cm tall, pubescent more or less in lines above the petioles Leaves: opposite, the petioles 1-3 cm long, the blades ovate to broadly lanceolate, 3-14 cm long, 2-7 cm broad, the bases broadly obtuse to rounded or truncate, more or less abruptly narrowed to the petiole, obtuse to acute at the apex, pubescent with more or less spreading hairs on both surfaces or infrequently glabrate INFLORESCENCE: UMBELS 1 to many, lateral, 5-8 cm broad, sessile or the peduncles to 2 cm long Flowers: large; calyx lobes 3.5-6 mm long; corolla purplish-green, the lobes 12-16 mm long; hoods yellowish to orangish, erect, oblong from a rounded base, more or less dilated above to an oblique or truncate apex, 8-11 mm long, 2-3 mm broad at the top, 4-7 mm longer than the gynostegium, the horns radially flat, attached in the upper half of the hoods, triangular, with a sharp, tooth-like projection exserted ca. 1 mm; anther wings 1.2-1.6 mm long; corpusculum 0.3 mm long, the pollinia 1.2-1.5 mm long Fruit: FOLLICLES erect on deflexed pedicels, 5-9 cm long Misc: Washes, slopes, roadsides of deserts, grasslands, and open woodlands; 500-2000 m (1600-6500 ft); Apr-Oct REFERENCES: Sundell, Eric. 1994. Asclepiadaceae. J. Ariz. - Nev. Acad. Sci. Volume 27, 169-187.
Sundell 1993, Woodson 1954, Kearney and Peebles 1969, Nabhan et al 2015
Duration: Perennial Nativity: Native Lifeform: Forb/Herb General: Low perennial herb, 10-40 cm tall; stems erect to spreading, sparingly branched from near the base, pubescent more or less in lines above the petioles; plants with milky sap. Leaves: Opposite and petiolate, the petioles 1-3 cm long; blades ovate to broadly lanceolate, 3-14 cm long, 2-7 cm broad, bases broadly obtuse to rounded or truncate and abruptly narrowed to the petiole, apex obtuse to acute, surfaces pubescent with spreading hairs or infrequently glabrate. Flowers: Large and cream-white, in 1-many lateral umbels, those 5-8 cm broad, sessile or on peduncles to 2 cm long; corolla purplish-green, lobes 12-16 mm long; hoods yellowish to orangish, erect, oblong from a rounded base, more or less dilated above to an oblique or truncate apex, 8-11 mm long, 2-3 mm broad at the top; horns radially flat, attached in the upper half of the hoods, triangular, with sharp, tooth-like projection exserted about 1 mm; calyx lobes 3-6 mm long, Fruits: Follicles erect on deflexed pedicels, 5-9 cm long and 1.5-3 cm wide. Ecology: Found in washes, on slopes and on roadsides, grasslands, at springs, and in open woodlands from 1,500-6,500 ft (457-1981 m); flowers April-October. Distribution: s CA, s NV, AZ, s NM; south to n MEX. Notes: Distinguished by the spreading to ascending, low-growing habit and the leaves that are large, dark green with wavy margins, and opposite, like you might find among the Nyctaginaceae. This is a known monarch host plant, particularly in fall after abundant summer monsoon rains. Ethnobotany: An infusion of the plant was given to infants with diarrhea. Etymology: Asclepias is named for the Greek god of healing Asklepios, while nyctaginifolia means having leaves like the Nyctaginaceae family. Synonyms: None Editor: SBuckley 2010, 2014, FSCoburn 2015, AHazelton 2015
Citation: The vPlants Project. vPlants: A Virtual Herbarium of the Chicago Region. http://www.vplants.org
Copyright © 2001–2009 The vPlants Project, All Rights Reserved.