Wild Edibles- Common Milkweed

Common Milkweed (Asclepias Syriaca) is a really delicious and nutritious plant, when properly cooked. In this episode, I show: 1. How to properly: identify, …


  1. I'm currently trying to grow four milkweed plants on my deck. I really liked the idea of creating a home for the monarchs. They have been a little tricky to grow and very slow but I'll keep at it.

  2. I bought Samuel Thayer's foraging book where he talks about the myth of the poisonous common milkweed. They can be eaten raw, taste great too! A common look-a-like is dogsbane which is poisonous and probably where the myth came from. I ate quite a bit of peeled shoots this spring so I can attest to it's safety.

  3. I boiled some milkweed once a few years ago and ate it. I didn't like it because it is bitter. But other people won't mind it. There is not much milkweed around so I think a few people eating would eat all of it.

  4. I kept a buch of milkweed pods in my bag and forgot about them. When I opened the bag several weeks later the pods had opened and hundereds of tiny seeds flew all over my room. Now I have a bag full of milkweed fluff, is there any use for that stuff.

  5. I have Milkweed that blooms here in Pennsylvania in late May/early June and is very fragrant and is very slow to spread. Wondering how I can propagate this to spread faster?

  6. Other Asclepius species than A. tuberosa ( butterfly weed) are more likely to be confused with the common one, though apart from showy milkweed (A. speciosa, which tends to replace Common west of the Mississippi) which is also reported to have a relatively low toxicity, they are more rare. A. sullivantii (prairie milkweed) ( which spreads less aggressively by rhizomes and I think has smooth pods) and A. purpurescens (the eastern Purple Milkweed, which doesn't form rhizomes and has prettier, darker flowers) are vegetatively similar but have higher cardenolides (heart poisons). Get to know the milkweeds in your area ( or intentionally plant the ones you want–Common for food, others for landscaping or Monarchs [except, ironically, butterfly weed which has good nectar but such tough leaves that female Monarchs will rarely lay eggs on it if something else is available).
    In Chicago, milkweed bugs (which look almost the same as boxelder bugs– true bugs similar to stinkbugs, with orange and black aposemitic colors) swarm & feed on the pods of milkweeds and their close relatives. Do the pods become more bitter if attacked by insects?

  7. Here in Colorado we have the Showy Milkweed. Exactly the same as Common Milkweed except they have larger flower clusters with longer petals on each flower, and they are brighter pink. Edible, with the same processing as Common Milkweed.

  8. milkweed can remove hair on a anamal nabor kid used the sap to paint a sware word on a cow thinking it would just wash off the hare fell out a few days latter. he gort in a lot of trubel over that.

  9. Dogbane (Apocynum cannabinum) seeds can indeed be safe to eat and the milk made into a gum, it isalso a medicinally viable plant if correctly processed. Great information but research a bit more before hating on a very value and needed plant.

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