Milkweed | Seeds Harvested

Our View From Iowa

Milkweed plants are disappearing according to Monarch Watch and other sources. The Monarch butterflies rely upon them for survival. I decided to gather a few seed pods so I can plant some in my backyard and along a trail near my house. I cruised around some places on my bike looking for patches of milkweed that had extra pods I could harvest and bring home. I only took seven and left the rest for nature. I placed them on the deck for a month to dry out. That worked well. They split open and revealed their many seeds with attached coma.

01plate Click to embiggen

Each pod had dozens of healthy brown seeds. The challenge was to remove them without getting coma fuzzies all over the place. The garage seemed the best place to do that job.

02closer Click to embiggen

I grasped each pod firmly by the end opposite the seeds. That is where the…

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9 thoughts on “Milkweed | Seeds Harvested

  1. The arrangement of pods/seeds on that beautiful plate is very striking! Good luck with your milkweeds~ hope you get a good crop. I have swamp milkweed, Asclepias incarnata, growing in my yard. Since I planted a few, they have joyfully seeded themselves throughout. Their scent is wonderful!
    It’s a good thing to do. Do you also plant native shrubs for other species? Willows and Black Cherries are host to a number of butterflies whose numbers are also precarious.


    • Thanks. Melanie suggested I put them on a pretty plate. It was a good idea.

      I harvested common milkweed. There are several other varieties I’ve see along hiking trails. Not sure what they are or how to harvest. I never see pods or the like.

      We have a wooded area directly behind our house. I leave it to nature to manage. Now and then I will cull out some invasives like garlic mustard. But almost everything is natural…service berry, wild cherry, mulberry, locust, elm, raspberry, gooseberry, etc.


      • That sounds wonderful. I’m plunked down in the middle of suburbia…but lately on walks I’m noticing several yards where people are putting in native plants. I’m so relieved to see it, because it can give a yard a scruffy look and I’m glad to have the company!

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