Plants Now Available!
We had very good reports of members growing milkweed from our plugs in 2016, and seeing Monarch butterflies come visit so we look forward to more this year. Plants are available now!
This is an important fund-raiser for Sustainable Wellesley, we accept donations of $5.00 for each ‘plug’ of milkweed. You can also buy the plants at their cost of $2.00 each, because we want everyone to be able to take part. Each plant is a short plug that has been truncated for shipping and will grow quickly. We recommend 2-4 plugs to get milkweed established in your garden. Milkweed prefers full sun and average-moisture soil, and will grow….like a weed, but without invasive root propagation.
You will need to collect your plugs from an address in Wellesley.
Milkweed For Monarchs
Sustainable Wellesley is helping residents do their part to support the Monarch butterfly – by sourcing milkweed for you to put in your yard. Monarch populations are crashing and one reason is the lack of milkweed that Monarch caterpillars *must* eat to survive. And milkweed is a beautiful pink and white plant that attracts even more beautiful butterflies to your home!
Monarchs can produce four generations during one summer. After overwintering in the oyamel forests of central Mexico the first three generations have life spans of two to six weeks and keep moving north. During this time they will mate and have the next generation that will continue the northward migration. The fourth generation is different and can live up to nine months, and this is the one that needs to find milkweed in your yard. These are also the butterflies that will migrate south for winter to either Mexico or southern California.
…by 90 percent in recent years from both the loss of its overwintering grounds, and from the widespread elimination of milkweed in the United States by the use of herbicides like Roundup. This is where you come in: by planting milkweed in your (herbicide-free, pesticide-free) yard you provide the vital link in the Monarch lifecycle. Each year Sustainable Wellesley sources the correct species of milkweed for eastern Massachusetts (Asclepias incarnata) and makes it available to beautiful butterfly breeders like you.
Please send any questions to firstname.lastname@example.org, and do join the discussion in the comments section below. Let us know how your plants are doing and if you’ve seen any butterflies.
We provided a record 228 plants to happy Sustainable Wellesley members and friends, and we are delighted that Green Newton started their own program modeled on ours. We look forward to hearing how your plants are doing!
We had a fabulous year for the butterflies in 2015! More than 60 homes in Wellesley signed up for Milkweed For Monarchs and together you planted well over 200 plants! This more than 5x the volume of 2014 so that is very exciting. We also switched to charging for the plants – either cost or a small markup and this was very successful. Reports are coming in of hardy, attractive plants growing well, and most importantly Monarch butterflies spotted taking advantage of the bounty.
Our first foray into Milkweed For Monarchs started because Quentin couldn’t find proper indigenous milkweed anywhere. He tracked down our first (wonderful but remote) suppliers in Kansas and bought two “flats” of 64 plants total. We gave away 40 plants to happy Sustainable Wellesley members.