Sunday, April 1, 2012

Can't Have Too Many

I've heard it said that one can never be too thin or have too many silk blouses. And if you maintain a butterfly garden you for sure can't have too many milkweed plants.  Monarch lava (caterpillars) are eating machines and they only feed on the leaves of milkweed plants, also known as Butterfly Weed. A few can strip a two foot plant of all its leaves in a couple of days, so keeping the plants replenished in the garden takes some planning and effort.

Here are pictures taken on Friday of seedlings in our greenhouse and of larger plants purchased locally.

 If you look closely at the larger ones you will see they already have caterpillars at work on them as shown in the closeup just below.

Look for the two sets of arrows like this >>>>>>> and <<<<<<<<<<<<

Want to see these guys up close?   I picked these off our plants at home and took them to the park on Saturday afternoon where they can eat their fill without killing our seedlings.

        One of the main reasons for the butterfly garden is to serve as a learning tool for children.  The Norchester Garden Club ladies put on programs for day care and home schooled 4 and 5 year olds.  In the last two years 267 kids have gone through and over 108 are scheduled for this spring.   Along with educational stories and games, a simple craft is part of the program.  Here butterfly fans are getting their handles applied.  These will be colored by a child to take home as a memento.
If you have an interest in helping out with these 45 min. programs, drop an email to

1 comment:

Lucy Abbott said...

What wonderful pictures! I love all the little seedlings. I also enjoyed seeing all those monarch caterpillars! Very Nice!