Butterfly gardening is a popular past-time in Florida. One easy-to-grow plant that provides both caterpillar food and nectar for the adult butterfly is the butterfly weed or Asclepias.
Monarch butterflies are regular visitors to this low-maintenance
plant. Also sometimes called milkweed for the milky sap that escapes
when stems or leaves are bruised, this colorful plant tolerates many
site conditions but prefers the sunny and rather dry soils.
Occasionally visited by hummingbirds, it is a fast grower, reaching
a mature height at 3-4 feet quickly while producing brightly colored
flowers from April through September. An added bonus is that
butterfly weed re-seeds readily, so sharing with friends or adding
to other parts of the garden is easy and inexpensive.