A Weedy Tale

Asclepias syriaca, or common milkweed tale that is.

It was very common in the pastures and roadsides when I was a child. I don’t see it as often know – I don’t frequent pastures often and roadsides get more herbicide.

Milk weed. Break a stem and you find the source of the name in the white sap. As weeds go it didn’t cause much of a bother. An elementary school art project used the empty seed pods one year. With milkweed and a few other common plants plus lots of silver, gold, and vibrant paint we created original bouquets.

Anecdotes from my oldest brother and his peers tell of another use. During WWII the pods were collected when full and almost ready to burst. The fibers attached to the seeds were then removed and used in insulation for Artic military gear. (Details on this were scarce. Where did they turn them in?)

War Volunteer?
War Volunteer?



Leave a Reply