Saturday, August 14, 2010

Monarchs Visit My Garden

It seems the only ones enjoying all the heat and humidity in my garden are the monarchs.  I stepped outside the comfort of my air conditioned house the other day to watch the monarchs gracefully float around my yard.  It was so humid that the lens of my camera immediately fogged up.  It's obviously mating season, and I am looking forward to finding the caterpillars on my milkweed plants.   My dad told me that the monarchs that leave Mexico to migrate north only make it to the lower United States, so the ones that arrive here are the babies of those who migrated from Mexico. Which would explain why we do not see monarchs in Wisconsin until late July/early August.  Want to attract monarchs to your garden?  You will need to plant milkweed in your yard, since it's the only plant that is both food and a host to the monarch.  Monarch lay their eggs on milkweed, the larvae then eat the milkweed when they hatch.  Milkweed is poisonous, thus making the monarchs poisonous which helps protect them from predators such as birds.  Two other plants in my garden that the monarchs flock to are Meadow Blazing Star and Ligularia.

3 comments:

patsybell said...

What a delightful post. I really enjoyed your butterfly photos.

rockriverstitches said...

Saw your tweet and headed to your blog to see your monarch photos which are great! I plan to attract more monarchs next year with purple coneflower which I bought today at half price at the garden center.

Tammy

rohrerbot said...

I wondered why monarchs weren't eaten...it's the milkweed that makes them not tasty to birds. We have the Queen butterfly here which mimics the monarch....they were all over the bushes today....thanks for sharing your pics.