Saving monarchs: What you plant can make a difference

Love monarchs? It’s a great time to walk your yard and consider if you’ve planted flowering plants, shrubs and trees to support them.

Photo by Mindy Tape, MSU

It’s been a fun summer for monarch watchers. The butterflies seem more numerous and momentum is growing for being intentional about planting flowers for all pollinators. At the end of August, many Michiganders began seeing a notable number of monarch butterflies flying south. The truly lucky are seeing the butterflies collect to roost at night in trees. Having a number of butterflies swirling around you can be magical.

What are monarch butterflies finding in your yard now? They need flowers blooming from spring to late fall to have a steady source of nectar, their food, and milkweeds for their eggs and caterpillars. Take a look at our brief video featuring the milkweeds and some of the flowers butterflies favor in Michigan.

This work is supported by the Crop Protection and Pest Management Program 2017-70006-27175 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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