Saturday, July 5, 2008

Milkweed and Monarchs

How well do you know milkweed? It has an amazing fragrance, beautiful flowers and is the plant of choice for Monarch butterflies. Honey bees like it too. I finally saw a honey bee and it was on the milkweed. Not every gardener would let milkweed grow in their garden however, because it spreads like crazy. Of course a little thing like that would never stop me where fragrance and butterflies are involved.

I have to recommend a book, An Extraordinary Life, by Laurence Pringle. It should be in the juvenile section of your library. The story of the Monarch is an amazing one and this book is great. For my money you can't beat a children's book for something like this. It tells you exactly what you want to know and usually in a delightful way.

I wanted to get a picture of this spectacular male Monarch on the milkweed. I made several tries with fuzzy results. That's what I love about plants. They don't flit around when you want to take their picture. I finally caught up with him on the poppy next door. In case you want to know how I know it's a male, and you don't know where to look, you can check his back wings for those two black scent glands.

No comments: