WILDFLOWERS OF NEW MEXICO

 
 

A dense foliage of needle-like leaves and tight clusters of small, white, rosy to yellowish-green flowers cover the 8–20-inch tall stems of this distinctive milkweed. The sap is milky.


FLOWER: April–September. Dense, rounded clusters of  white or pink-tinted flowers form at upper nodes just below the branch tips. 5 erect, tubular hoods with small, pointed horns surround the central column, and 5 white, petal-like lobes fold back against the stem with the tips spreading wide beneath the flower. The 1 1/2–2 1/2-inch long seed pods mature upright.


LEAVES: Alternate in irregular spirals, densely crowded on the stems, the 1/2–2-inch long leaves look like miniature pine needles reaching 1 1/2-inches long (4 cm) and 1 mm wide.


HABITAT: Sandy, loamy, calcareous soils, foothills; shortgrass prairies, mesquite-grasslands.


ELEVATION: 4,000–7,200 feet.


RANGE: CO, IA, KS, MY, ND, NE, NM, OK, SD, TX, WY.


SIMILAR SPECIES: The short, needle-like leaves distinguish this from the other 32 species of milkweed in NM.


NM COUNTIES: Eastern NM in low- to mid-elevation, dry habitats: Colfax, Curry, Guadalupe, Harding, Lincoln, Mora, Otero, Quay, Rio Arriba, Roosevelt, San Miguel, Union..

PLAINS  MILKWEED

ASCLEPIAS  PUMILA

Dogbane Family, Apocynaceae (formerly Milkweed Family, Asclepiadaceae)

Perennial herb

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  1. 1.Hoods of flower (lower arrow)

  2. 2. Horns inside hoods. (middle arrow)

  3. 3. Petals with tips spread wide. (upper arrow)

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