During the Victorian Era, milkweed pods were painted and used as Christmas tree decorations. We made some one year at The Center at The Christmas Retreat. Now, I am reading that crushed milkweed pods can be used to make paper! The crushed pods are boiled until soft and then made into paper using the sheetforming technique. The pods give the paper a rich texture! Oh boy! I will be waiting for those seeds to fly!
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
The Common Milkweed
Sunday, when we were at Julie's, the milkweed pods near her house looked like they were preparing to burst. Asciepias, the milkweeds, is named after Asclepius, the Greek god of healing, because of the many folk-medicinal uses for the milkweed plants. The Asclepias species produce their seeds in follicles. The seeds, which are arranged in overlapping rows, have white silky filament-like hairs known as pappus, silk, or floss. The follicles ripen and split open and the seeds, each carried by several dried pappus, are blown by the wind.