Asclepiadaceae Asclepias cryptoceras

Five petalled creamy yellow flower with five deep pink balls that look like seeds in the center.

Asclepias cryptoceras

Family: Asclepiadaceae - Milkweed Family

Perennial herbs; 3.9” to 1' (1 to 3 dm) tall

Leaves: opposite; simple; broad leaves 0.8” to 4.6” (2 to 11.5 cm) long, 0.6” to 4.4” (1.5 to 11 cm) wide; no hairs

Flowers: large greenish-yellow umbellate flowers; petals curled backward; 5 petals; rose colored 5 lobed crown (corona) present between the corolla and the stamens; lobes 0.4” to 0.6” (10 to 15 mm) long; flowers perfect; 5 sepals; 5 stamens; 2 carpels

Pollinators: other species of Asclepias are pollinated by insects (specifically bees, moths and butterflies)

Fruits: 2 follicles

Blooms in Arches National Park: April, May

Habitat in Arches National Park: desert shrub and pinyon-juniper communities

Location seen: Delicate Arch Viewpoint trail

Other: The genus name, “Asclepias”, refers to “Asklepios”, a Greek physician and an authority on the medicinal use of plants and who according to Greek Myth could bring the dead to life. Hades fearing a loss of employment, convinced his brother Zeus to kill Asklepios with a bolt of lightning. The species name, “cryptoceras”, is from “cryptos” which means "hidden" and “keras” which means "horn or antlers".

Last updated: November 27, 2021

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