Growing Milkweed From Seed: A rewarding and frustrating endeavor

Monarch painting on pot
Monarch painting on pot

Growing Milkweed from Seed –

I have tried growing milkweed from seed, I buy a plant, I put it in pots, over time it dies. It might be the ending of this story as well but I’m hopeful it will not be the case.

I’ve learned a lot about growing the milkweed plants from seed. They are easy to grow in nature as the name infers-Milkweed.

They are the first plant that people remove from a pasture, they are poisonous which protects the caterpillar and butterfly from predators and they are the only food for the hungry caterpillars.

I am trying to bring milkweed not only to home and garden but allow it to grow in roadside areas-if people know why they shouldn’t destroy a patch of weeds, maybe they will think twice before clearing an area.

For more of my pix of garden butterflies and caterpillars.

Monarch on Sunflower-Growing Milkweed From Seed
Monarch on Sunflower

So here is what I learned so far.

They need light, lots of light when they start from seed, then keep them in the light and keep the water on a minimum but don’t let the plant get too dry-this is the difficult part. You have to watch them every day.

I learned that putting them in a fish tank is helpful, I think it keeps the humidity up and allows you not to water as much and risk killing them.

If you don’t give the seedlings enough light, they will tend to get long and thin trying to find light-they don’t last long once they get like that-that’s when they get too thin and shrivel up.

Do not allow direct sun to fry them and yet, make sure they have plenty of direct light. When one dies, leave it alone for a bit as they tend to come back from the root.

They have a deep tap root, that’s why they don’t need too much water on the surface, good news, bad news-they don’t like to be transplanted.

Stay tuned for more planting tips and butterfly paintings,

Where to buy milkweed:


Seeds On-Line

Joyful Butterfly – Online-great plants, nice people

Local – North Haven Gardens

Events that Sell Milkweed plants- Discovery Gardens Plant Sale

Heard Museum Plant Sale

Artbygordon: Original oils on canvas, Original pastels on paper celebrating the beauty and mystery of nature. Water and night skies are my specialties.