A longtime rural resident, I use my 60 plus years of life learning to opinionate here and elsewhere on the “interweb” on everything from politics to environmental issues. A believer in reasonable discourse rather than unhelpful attacks I try to give positive input to the blogesphere, so feel free to comment upon rural issues or anything else posted here. But don’t be surprised if you comments get zapped if you are not polite in your replys.

Friday, July 19, 2013

Milkweed & Monarchs

We here don’t have a large part of our property open enough to have lots of milkweed growing but being aware of the link between milkweed and the monarch butterfly make a point of mot cutting any down that does show up in our open areas. Over the more than 10 years we have been privileged to own this property we have noted a decline in the number of milkweed flowering or even showing a few leaves, some years we hardly see any. We are thus surprised and pleased to see a massive increase in the milkweed population this year, we have never seen such a large number of plants on our property, unfortunately this coincides with a report that this year also has seen the largest decline in monarch migration on record.

Is this coincidence or is this natures way of evening out the balance given the destruction of the monarchs forest wintering areas in Mexico, I don’t know, only time will tell but meanwhile I will be looking for them to be laying their eggs on my milkweed. Thus far I have not seen any and have no idea how the rather strange weather patterns will effect them, will the extreme heat send them further north, will heavy rain effect their egg clusters? Its not something I have taken a great deal of time investigating but given what I believe to be an increasing fragility of our natural environment you may be sure I will celebrate that first sighting of a monarch on one of our plants and hope that it signals a return to balance and a return of the monarch population.

Yahooo, just saw the first Monach this year and the milkweed is in full flower awaiting their arrival!

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