|Find the blueberry plants|
Last summer, the milkweed in my yard fell victim to aphids, farmed by ants. I have tried several natural ant repellents - coffee grounds (thanks, Starbucks!), Russian sage, catmint - but the ants are back. So far no aphids, though. Fingers crossed.
|Indian hemp too|
Along with the milkweed is a cousin, Indian hemp (Apocynum cannabinum). It was only on last year's Garden Bloggers Fling that I was able to identify this plant. A native, it is supposedly very attractive to butterflies, so its presence among the milkweed seems natural.
The scent of milkweed blooms is incredibly sweet, a gardener's reward for battling bindweed and other unwanted plants in the bed. I'm hoping by developing an entire stand of milkweed, I will someday also be rewarded with monarch caterpillars (and not the "other milkweed caterpillar" that last year destroyed my butterflyweed). One can only hope.