Saturday, November 10, 2012

My Milkweed


Above are two forms of the same plant when it gets ready to redistribute its seeds. The green pod at the top is full of the same seed as the one at the bottom, but not quite ready to show its fecundity.


A close up shows how many, many seeds must be produced for this plant to survive. These seeds do not produce in abundance in my yard...at least yet. Maybe as the plants settle in I will have many more popping up. Notice how neatly they are laid against one another. A tile of snuggled reproduction. Tight and symmetrical so that there is room for as many as possible. Then as the season moves on and the days warm and dry...




...the pod will explode into this fire cracker of fluff that will carry these seeds far from the mother plant on any fall breeze.  These little white parachutes are as soft to the touch as they look.  They grow wild with abandon in many of the parks where I walk and hike and it is fun to help distribute their future with grandchildren.

15 comments:

Angie said...

I ADORE milkweed but haven't gotten any started in my yard yet. I would love to have some of the ones that are that gorgeous pink but the ones in the fields here are a cream color. Isn't nature amazing with her art and talent. :)

Keats The Sunshine Girl said...

A lovely explosion!

kenju said...

I have not seen any milkweed in years, but it was always a treat to come upon it in childhood and blow the seeds to kingdom come!

Brian Miller said...

distributing their future grandchildren...smiles...i love milkweed....we have some nearby and we help them spread just a bit by tossing the seed in the air and watching it fly...

Joanne Noragon said...

Milkweek need both male and female plants present to pollinate; they can't do the job individually. Together with loss of habitat, they are in trouble. Some are on the endangered species list. I wish I understood more about getting the sexes together and increasing the population.

Mystic Meandering said...

"A tile of snuggled reproduction." Love that! Haven't seen milkweed, or their pods since I was a child in New England. And then when we lived in Northern Virginia for several years. Don't seem to find it here in Colorado. I love how nature just replicates itself again, and again, and again...

Red said...

Cat tails are also a lot of fun for kids but they can also make a big mess.

Granny Annie said...

I had forgotten all about milkweed. What a great post and exciting capture.

Dave King said...

Completely captivating post. Great text with fab' images. Loved it. Knew nothing about milkweed before this. Much thanks.

Chris said...

One of my favorite weeds, I leave some in the garden. I like it's "dime store" perfume, so sweet, a high summer smell.

lime said...

you've captured them so well. i'd imagine you know they are the plant monarch butterflies favor.

FOLKWAYS NOTEBOOK said...

Your milkweed photos are absolutely fantastic -- I am hard pressed to pick a favorite but perhaps the last photo. You are a great photographer. Might I mention that without milkweed plants around the Monarch butterfly's larvae (caterpillars) would starve as it is the only food they eat. No milkweeds - no Monarchs. -- barbara

Hilary said...

Lovely photos of one of my favourite plants. The seeds have been drifting past me the past few weeks on my walks.. and will continued to do so for many weeks to come since the pods tend to explode at different times of the season. They're clever that way.

One Woman's Journey - a journal being written from Woodhaven - her cottage in the woods. said...

Beautiful image - none in my woods...

Barb said...

I like milkweed almost as much as the Monarch butterflies. It doesn't grow well at altitude unfortunately.