Asclepias, Tropical Milkweed, Bloodflower, Butterfly Weed, Mexican Milkweed, Scarlet Milkweed 'Silky Gold'

Asclepias curassavica

Family: Apocynaceae (a-pos-ih-NAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Asclepias (ass-KLE-pee-us) (Info)
Species: curassavica (ku-ra-SAV-ik-uh) (Info)
Cultivar: Silky Gold
Additional cultivar information:(aka Aurea)



Tropicals and Tender Perennials

Water Requirements:

Average Water Needs; Water regularly; do not overwater

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun



Foliage Color:



24-36 in. (60-90 cm)


15-18 in. (38-45 cm)


USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)

USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)

USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)

USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)

USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)

USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

USDA Zone 11: above 4.5 C (40 F)

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Bloom Color:

Gold (yellow-orange)

Bloom Characteristics:

This plant is attractive to bees, butterflies and/or birds

Bloom Size:


Bloom Time:

Mid Summer

Other details:

May be a noxious weed or invasive

Soil pH requirements:

6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Patent Information:

Unknown - Tell us

Propagation Methods:

From seed; direct sow outdoors in fall

From seed; winter sow in vented containers, coldframe or unheated greenhouse

From seed; sow indoors before last frost

From seed; direct sow after last frost

Seed Collecting:

Bag seedheads to capture ripening seed

Allow pods to dry on plant; break open to collect seeds

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:


Mobile, Alabama

Huntsville, Arkansas

Calistoga, California

Castro Valley, California

Concord, California

Elk Grove, California

Encinitas, California

Long Beach, California

Richmond, California

San Leandro, California

Stockton, California

Vista, California

Delray Beach, Florida

Deltona, Florida

Dunnellon, Florida

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Hollywood, Florida

Largo, Florida

Itasca, Illinois

Hebron, Kentucky

Deridder, Louisiana

Geismar, Louisiana

West Monroe, Louisiana

Bellaire, Michigan

High Point, North Carolina

Red Oak, North Carolina

Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania

Columbia, South Carolina

Conway, South Carolina

North Augusta, South Carolina

Okatie, South Carolina

Alice, Texas

Bulverde, Texas

College Station, Texas

Conroe, Texas

Fort Worth, Texas

Los Fresnos, Texas

New Braunfels, Texas

Princeton, Texas

Victoria, Texas

Willis, Texas

Anacortes, Washington

Concrete, Washington

Greenbank, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On Jun 2, 2018, bobbiev from Mount Vernon, WA wrote:

Absolutely positive!! This is one of my all-time favorite flowers, and especially of this species. But my experience is quite different than in some of the data. First of all it is lower growing, not reaching more than 2 feet. It lists the zone as 10 degrees, but I lived back in the mountains where we would have extended periods of cold between 0 and 5 degrees. This plant came back more and more beautiful each year. It formed a nice round tidy 18-inch diameter mound of delicious buttery gold that lit up the garden beautifully and always caught the attention of all who passed by. It reseeded, but not close to the plant, and not excessively or even nearly as much as I wanted it to. It seemed to like to nestle into the crack between the lawn and the sidewalk, where I would carefully d... read more


On Feb 10, 2006, sltxgardener from Sugar Land, TX wrote:

This plant is the larval host plant for the monarch butterfly and is so popular with the hungry, little critters that you'll want to plant it behind another plant that doesn't get eaten down to the bare stems. Keep it accessible, though, because you'll love watching the beautiful monarch caterpillars munching away. When one "litter" disappears, look around your garden for the glittering green chrysalises. Our palms were a very popular spot with successive generations last summer and fall. What a joy to share our garden with such beautiful creatures!


On Aug 24, 2005, achoogardner from Red Oak, NC (Zone 7b) wrote:

I bought a packet of these because they were good for the butterflies. They have grown well and are great plants but somehow I felt I should have seen more butterflies than what I have. I still like them anyway and will grow them again next year.