Watch for germination in two to three weeks. Turn off the propagation mat one week after the seeds sprout. Move the pots into a cold frame outdoors or against a south-facing wall with noonday shade.
Butterfly weed and milkweed seed pods may be harvested and planted to support Monarch butterfly caterpillars. Butterfly weed grows well from seeds, which must be harvested in late summer and either sown immediately in the garden, or started in spring after a lengthy chilling process. The seeds are viable and will germinate with little care, although they must be planted at the appropriate depth to ensure successful sprouting.
Leave the bucket outdoors for two or three days to let the fluff blow away. Stir the seeds occasionally to loosen more fluff. Do not worry if some of the fluff remains, since it won’t inhibit the germination process.
Snip off the pod using pruning shears. Slice lengthwise along the edge using a utility knife. Pry open the seed pods. Scoop out the seeds and fluffy matter inside and place it in a bucket.
Make a 1/4-inch-deep planting hole in the center of compost mixture. Drop one butterfly weed seed in the planting hole. Cover it with a loose layer of compost. Mist the compost to settle it.
Sometimes called pleurisy root, butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa) is a perennial wildflower grown for its showy, reddish-orange flower clusters and textured, lanceolate leaves. A member of the milkweed family, it thrives throughout U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 3 to 9, where it is frequently added to butterfly gardens and native plant landscaping.
Transplant the butterfly weed into a permanent bed in spring just after the last frost. If planting butterfly weed in clay soil, dig in 2 to 4 inches of compost to lighten the soil, or consider building raised beds to increase drainage.
Planting now (Nov.) so they can stratify for next year. Looking forward to a nice treat next year or later.
Uses: Attracts Pollinators, Attracts Honeybees, Attracts Butterflies, Hummingbirds, Deer Resistant
Seeds per Ounce: 4,200
Butterfly Weed Seeds
Bloom Season: Blooms Early Summer, Blooms Late Summer
Common Names: Pleurisy Root, Orange Milkweed
Species Origin: US Native Wildflower
Otherwise you can always buy butterfly weed seeds online. Here are some great, quality seeds to get you started… Butterfly Weed Seeds.
It can be difficult to find butterfly weed seeds for sale, but many garden centers should carry them starting in mid-winter through early spring.
How To Harvest Butterfly Weed Seeds Step-By-Step
I would just leave the pods on your butterfly weed plant until they ripen. I don’t think transplanting it would make a difference. Also, butterfly weed plants are super hardy, so frost won’t hurt the plant or the seed pods.
Steve Cochran says
Wow, your butterfly weed plants flowered AND produced seed pods the first year after planting the seeds? That is amazing! Have fun collecting them for next year. 🙂