Posted by Lesley on May 1, 2010
The only thing unattractive about milkweed is its name. Weed carries a negative connotation for most gardeners; it implies pesky or intrusive, but milkweed is neither. It produces bold little blooms and attracts over 160 species of butterflies! I thought it was just monarchs, but they’re simply the most familiar because monarchs feed solely on milkweed. Depending on where you live, milkweed will attract viceroys, queens, skippers, fritillaries, and more. This is only one of the five monarch caterpillars I’ve seen in the past two weeks on my two milkweed plants.
John called me a nerd when I stuck this bumper sticker on my car, but I love it!
Posted by Lesley on January 25, 2010
My grandmother always said, “Haste makes waste.” It’s true for anyone, even a caterpillar. The last two caterpillars roamed for over a day to find their perfect spot, but this first one anchored under the first leaf he found.
I use he because the female Monarch population is dropping but also because only a man would be so impatient and impractical! The leaf had been gnawed down to a stem and dried up within days. It had just about snapped off when I rigged the chrysalis back up with some thread. But again it didn’t hold in place. The future wings were resting on the stem of the milkweed, which didn’t give him enough room to spread ‘em on emergence.
He needed more space. Here’s his upgraded digs – the handle of a planter pot.