Milkweed, Monarchs and Home Gardeners to the Rescue


Monarch in east Texas at Thanksgiving

On a Wing and a Prayer - Monarch Butterflies and Home Gardeners

Almost everyone knows about the steady decline of the Monarch butterfly from one source or another. Today is different and the Monarchs need every home gardener. It’s a bad news/good news situation, but there’s a much bigger upside to this story. 

The Bad News 

The Xerces Society - a leader in Monarch butterfly conservation - released the official Thanksgiving Monarch Overwintering count for the 2018 season. The numbers are grim, with “an all-time record low of 28,429 monarchs counted…This number is an 86% drop from the previous count done at Thanksgiving 2017, when 192,668 monarchs were counted…” This represents “a dizzying 99.4% decline from the numbers present in the 1980s. In short, only one of every 160 monarchs present in the 1980s exists today.” 

Here is what that decline looks like -

  Western Monarch Decline

Graphic used with permission from Xerces Society - permission granted by Matthew Shepherd, Xerces Society Media Manager

1/25/2019 8:01:20 PM

Are there recommendations for the best nectar flowers to plant? In addition is there a planting schedule for the nectar flowers so that the nectar needed is available for a longer period of time?

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