|Main site page||Plants list||The same article: українською, на русском||Flowering monitor|
Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca), fam. Apocynaceae or Asclepiadaceae.
Grows sometimes in the city, as well as in the forest in the area of "continuation" of Alma-Atynska street. A mighty plant, in spring it brings shoots with leaves reminding the domestic ficus. These young shoots are possibly edible. In June, the flowering attracts a lot of insects. In autumn, the capsule fruits ripen. After opening them you can see the crested seeds, like the enlarged dandelion fruit. They were used for technical purposes as a source of fiber, "cottonwool" – hence the Russian and Ukrainian names have been derived. But the species name "Syrian" is confusing, and kept only by tradition, because the plant actually originates from North America. The English name is due to the sap or latex that the plant contains.
In agricultural fields, the milkweed sometimes becomes a malicious weed.
The milkweed roots are used in strictly defined doses to treat heart diseases. The roots, seeds and, to a lesser degree, other parts of the plant can be poisonous.