Did you know that monarch butterflies undertake a 2 THOUSAND mile journey every winter? They travel from Canada to Mexico. This amazing migration spans the life of three or four generations of butterflies… this means that no single butterfly ever makes the entire journey. Isn’t that amazing!
I’m sure you have also heard that monarchs are in trouble. Some sources even say that monarch butterfly numbers have fallen by as much as 90 percent in recent years.
What’s to blame? Urbanization and the use of pesticides have all but eradicated the milkweed plants that monarch caterpillars feed on and the meadow nectar flowers that sustain the adult monarchs on their long and perilous journey.
And did you know that we all can help them thrive again? We can! We can start by eliminating pesticides from our gardens and lawns. We can involve our children in planting milkweed plants and have the joy of watching monarchs lay their tiny eggs. We can marvel at the little caterpillars that hatch and grow into beautiful big beings, right in our own gardens. We can watch them wrap themselves in chrysalises, emerge as majestic butterflies and fly away, taking up the journey their mom’s mom started.
And, we can plant native flowering plants to feed adult monarchs on their journey. Hummingbirds will love these flowers too.
We planted a butterfly garden this year and have marveled at the butterflies that have graced our garden. We have already had monarch eggs hatch on our milkweed plants but had to relocate them as our milkweeds are not mature enough to provide adequate food for growing caterpillars.
The native flowers don’t just bring monarchs into your garden… other butterflies will flock too!
Just look at these beauties…
Here’s to helping the butterflies.
Blessings and magic,