Monarch on fall blooming native Frostweed. Photographed September, 2011
Migrating Monarch nectaring on Frostweed.
Photographed September 26, 2011
I’m so sorry folks but this is a post that is an old one. But I see that WP did not recognize the original post date. I needed to rework this post due to some errors of spelling, etc. and the fact that these were done as a gallery posting. And the photos did not come out as a slide show as I had intended. I had goofed mightily and thus pulled it from the blog where it has been sitting as “private.” So tonight, February 25, 2014, I worked on “reworking” this post. 🙂 Anyhoo so much for all that.
Around September the The Frostweed, a native, begins blooming. This dependable and very hardy plant is a nectar source for many species of butteflies. I’ve allowed it to grow in all its wild glory and in one area it is at least six feet tall. The tall ones grow along a wooden fence and receive the benefits of the neighbors lawn sprinkler system. Under the Cedar Elms and Live Oaks it is much shorter and maybe grows to about three to four feet tall. These areas where the shorties grow is much drier with dappled shade.
Some fifty years ago I planted maybe two plants that I dug from the wild. This past year I created a space of plants that caters to the butterflies taste. With the arrival of about five Mexican Butterfly Weed plants, the Monarchs all but ignored the Frostweed and instead zeroed in on the colorful Mexican butterfly weed which serves as a host and nectar plant for the Monarchs,
Freezing temps of 18-20 degrees killed the Mexican Butterfly Weed, a tropical flower. And, possibly a few other flowers of first year plantings that did not have an established root system. Now, I will have to buy new plants. I don’t mind spending a little bit of money. Anything to help the dwindling number of Monarch butterflies. Conservation practice is always a good thing no matter how small the effort.
Below is a link of one of my blogging friends, Stephen Gingold who is a superb photographer. Please check out his blog. His photos are a real treat. The first photo that appears when the link opens up is of a plant called Frostweed that grows in northeast, United States.
Monarch butterfly nectaring on Frostweed. Honey bee in background. September 26, 2011
Monarch Nectaring on Frostweed growing in my yard. September 26, 2011
Monarch butterfly on Frostweed 9/26/2011
Monarch feeding on Frostweed, growing in my yard. October, 2011
Monarch butterfly on fall blooming native Frostweed