Milkweed and Monarch Butterfly Mania

Come and get it! Create a habitat

Consider adding a small patch of milkweed to your yard. A 5 foot square area would be great. Just poke the seeds in the ground in the fall. They are usually hardy and need little care.

Two months of this cold storage is normally required to break the dormancy of these seeds. That is why I recommend planting in the autumn.

I started some milkweed plants in a large planter during October. The monarch butterflies found the emerging seedlings early the next spring. I saw the caterpillars on the plants when I prepared to transplant them into the garden. I left the plants in the pot until fall. When you plant seedlings in the garden they sometimes wilt for a bit. This is called transplant shock. I was concerned the caterpillars would be harmed if the plants suffered.

Plant your milkweed near a Butterfly bush (Buddlia) or other flowers that attract butterflies. That may help the butterflies find the milkweed plants.

It will be great when you can watch the whole amazing process in your own yard!

A milkweed seed source

Plant a patch of milkweed in a habitat garden at a school.

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Develop a school or community garden project

Resources / Main page

Fields, Meadows & Fencerows EcoStudy Unit

Our property is recognized as a Monarch Waystation

milkweed patch

There is a monarch caterpillar in this photo
of a milkweed patch. Can you find it?
Click on the photo to open it in a separate window.
Now click on the photo again to get a really close view.

Watch Green Thumbs video - future channel
Conduct the experiment.
What are your findings?

ivy rule

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