I love milkweed, seeds and pods, and their role in providing food for monarch and other butterflies.  But there’s much more to this plant.  The silky floss has good insulation properties and its fibers are used to clean up oil spills.  On the darker side, many natives in Africa and South America use the poison on the tips of their arrows, while milkweed is toxic to animals when taken in large amounts.

Often the floss of the milkweed flies in the wind, like a head of blonde hair. But in the case of the seeds I found in the park not long ago, each strand was adorned with a plethora of tiny, frosty diamonds.

Copyright janet m. webb




  1. […] via A girl’s best friend […]

  2. Su Leslie says:

    Lovely. And I so like the title of this post. Though I’m unconvinced of the truth in either the song or the movie title 🙂

  3. Tish Farrell says:

    Some more earth magic, Janet. Lovely.

  4. joey says:

    I agree with the love of milkweed as it feeds passing butterflies. I have some naturally, and others I planted in a campaign to save the Monarchs. It’s lovely here as it is there. This iced version is new to me, and I’m glad you captured it.

    • We have a few plants that my m-i-l would have called “volunteers” and I cherish them, but I ruthlessly dig out the large number that try to make a home in our lawn. 🙂 Fortunately, the small lake a few blocks away and “my” park have a plethora of milkweed, so that makes me very happy.


  5. Besides the ‘diamond’ reference, it also reminds me of rock candy from my youth. 🙂

  6. Jet Eliot says:

    I, too, love seeing the silken threads of the milkpod, Janet. Your sighting here, and capture, presents this special plant in a new and another beautiful way. Exquisite, thank you.

  7. SoyBend says:

    Nature’s winter fireworks. Gorgeous!

  8. Murphy's Law says:

    Diamonds indeed! So beautiful. Some of your photos, including this one, takes me back to when I was young. I grew up with Life Magazine, Saturday Evening Post, National Geographic, etc. At that time the written content meant nothing to me. But oh those photos. I was in awe of them. Studied them endlessly. Simple subjects turned into incredible photos. You do have a gift.

    Me? If I haven’t cut off too much of someone’s head, or their eyes don’t look like neon signs, or there isn’t so much sun glare or shadow that it distorts the picture, I figure I got a pretty good shot. Lol!!

    • Ginger, that may be the best compliment I’ve gotten here, although I’m not in the same league with those photographers. My m-i-l was a head-chopper when taking a photo and she once cut herself out of a shot when she didn’t like how she looked. 🙂


  9. Of course, I am a devotee to common milkweed and its role in the life cycle of monarchs. Thanks for the additional information, quite interesting.

  10. I have milkweed but I have never seen the likes of this. Very nice.
    We’ve gotten what I remember as and can only describe as fuzzy lithe tiny strands lining a long and fine filament.

  11. pommepal says:

    I’m loving all your magical frosty images Janet, this one is beautiful

  12. Tina Schell says:

    Wow, that’s really cool Janet! Had no idea they’d look like that when broken down.

  13. Dan Antion says:

    What a stunning capture – this is beautiful, Janet.

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