Eastern Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly On Butterfly Weed

mcstory

Hebron, United States

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Artist's Description

The Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus) is a species of swallowtail butterfly native to North America. It is a quick and strong flier, gliding when able. The males are a bright yellow, while the females can exhibit two different color forms; yellow and black and black and blue. It flies from spring to fall, during which it produces two to three broods
Butterfly Weed, Orange Milkweed or Chigger Flower (Asclepias tuberosa) is a member of the Milkweed Family (Asclepiadaceae). Asclepias tuberosa is a perennial herb 1-2 1/2 feet tall with woody rootstocks. According to Kelly Kindscher (1992), “Asclepias comes from the name of the Greek god of medicine, Asklepios. The species name, tuberosa, means full of swellings or knobs, referring to the enlarged root system.” Butterfly milkweed stems are hairy, erect, and grow in numerous clumps. There is a watery sap within the stems and leaves. The leaves are alternate, simple, crowded, lance-shaped, 5-10 cm long, shiny green, smooth above and velvety beneath. The flowers are in showy, rounded to flat-topped groupsnear the ends of branches. Each flower has 5 petals, bent downward, orange to red or sometimes yellow, topped by a crown of 5 erect hoods, each one containing a short horn. Fruits are hairy, spindle-shaped pods 8-15 cm long. The numerous seeds each have a tuft of long white hairs at the tip.
Milkweeds grow in clumps beside roadways, on abandoned farmlands, and in other open areas throughout the United States. Butterfly milkweed grows on sandy, loamy, or rocky limestone soils of prairies, open woodlands, roadsides, and disturbed areas similar to other milkweed species.
This photo was taken in the flower garden in my backyard.

Artwork Comments

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