Herbs with milky juice and opposite or whorled (rarely scattered) simple entire leaves. Pods, seeds, and anthers as in the last Order, but the anthers are more closely connected with the stigma, the (reflexed) lobes of the corolla are valvate in the bud, the pollen is in waxy masses, and the (monadel ph-ous) short filaments bear 5 curious hooded bodies behind the anthers. Flowers in umbels.
1. Ascle'pias. Corolla reflexed, deeply 5-parted. A crown of 5 hooded fleshy bodies with an incurved horn rising from the cavity of each hood. Leaves mostly opposite or whorled.
2. Acera'tes. Corolla reflexed or merely spreading. Crown as in No. 1, but no incurved horn. Leaves mostly alternate.
L. Milkweed. * Flowers greenish, yellowish or white, or merely purplish-tinged.
1. A. Cornu'ti, Decaisne. (Common Milkweed.) Stem tall and stout. Leaves oval or oblong, short-petioled, pale green, 4-8 inches long. Flowers dull greenish-purple. Pods ovate, soft-spiny, woolly. - Mostly in dry soil; very common.
2. A. specio'sa, Torr. Finely white-woolly or becoming glabrous, the many-flowered umbel and calyx densely woolly. Leaves oval to oblong, slightly cordate. Corolla-lobes purplish. Hoods with a long lanceolate appendage at the summit. - N.W.
3. A. phytolaccoi'des, Pursh. (Poke Milkweed.) Stem tall and smooth. Leaves broadly ovate, acute at both ends, short-petioled. Pedicels loose and nodding, very long and slender. Corolla greenish, with the hooded appendage white. Pods minutely downy, but not warty. - Moist thickets.
4. A. ovalifo'lia, Decaisne. Low, soft-downy. Leaves ovate to lance-oblong, acute, short-petioled, soft-pubescent beneath. Umbels loosely 10-18-flowered. Pedicel slender. Corolla-lobes greenish-white, slightly tinged with purple outside. - Hoods yellowish, with a small horn, obtuse, entire. - N.W.
5. A. quadrifo'lia, L. Stem slender, 1-2 feet high, mostly leafless below, with one or two whorls of four in the middle, and one or two pairs of ovate or ovate-lanceolate taper-pointed leaves. Corolla lobes pale pink; hoods white. - Not common, but abundant near Toronto.
6. A. verticillata, L., has slender stems and filiform-linear leaves with revolute margins, 3-6 in a whorl. Corolla-lobes greenish-white. - S.W. Ontario, and N.W.
* * Flowers red.
7. A. incarnata, L. (Swamp M.) Stem tall, leafy, branching, and smooth. Leaves oblong-lanceolate, acute, obscurely heart-shaped at the base. Flowers rose-purple. Pods very smooth and glabrous. - Swamps and low grounds.
* * * Flowers orange.
8. A. tubero'sa, L. (Butterfly-weed. Pleurisy-root.)
Stem very leafy, branching above, rough-hairy. Leaves linear or oblong-lanceolate, chiefly scattered. Corolla greenish-orange, with the hoods bright orange-red. Pods hoary. Dry hill-sides and fields; almost destitute of milky juice.
1. A. viridiflo'ra, Ell. Stems ascending, 1-2 feet high, minutely soft-downy, becoming smoothish. Leaves oval to linear. The compact umbels of greenish flowers nearly sessile, lateral, many-flowered. - Dry soil, from Niagara Falls westward.
Var. lanceolata, Gray, has lanceolate leaves. - S. W. Ontario and N.W.
Var. linea'ris, Gray, has elongated-linear leaves, and low stems. Umbels often solitary. - N.W.