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Poke Milkweed (Asclepias exaltata L.)

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Poke Milkweed

Summary

A perennial plant named for its superficial resemblance (including both of the leaves, and the tall height and robust growth habit of this plant) to pokeweed (Phytolacca americana), which is not closely related.

Range - Expand

LegendColor
Native
Native or Not Present
Native or Expanded
Expanded or Not Present
Native or Expanded or Not Present

This tentative map is based on our own research. It may have limited data on Canada and/or Mexico, and there is some subjectivity in our assignment of plants as introduced vs. expanded. Read more in this blog post.

Similar Plants

thumbnail of Common Milkweed
Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca)
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Habitat

Moist areas of upland woodlands, with a particular preference for gaps or woodland edges. Prefers areas sheltered from wind. Prefers shadier conditions than most Asclepias, but still needs at least some direct sunlight. Found in well-drained loamy soils, possibly with some sand.

Humans probably increase the habitat for this species by creating slightly higher-light conditions along paths and roads in forests.

Closely related to common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca), and able to form viable hybrids with this species.

Numerous other Asclepias species overlap with this one in range, and some are much more common, but they are usually found in more open habitats.

Asclepias exaltata (Poke Milkweed) | Illinois Wildflowers (About This Site)

Asclepias exaltata (Poke Milkweed) | USDA PLANTS Database (About This Site)

Asclepias exaltata | Go Botany (About This Site)

Poke Milkweed | iNaturalist (About This Site)

Asclepias exaltata | Biota of North America Project (BONAP) (About This Site)

Photo gallery

Photo © aberkov, CC BY 4.0.
Photo © sarahalder, CC BY 4.0.
Photo © aarongunnar, CC BY 4.0.
Photo © Evan M. Raskin, CC BY 4.0.
Photo © Sandy Wolkenberg, CC BY 4.0.