Why is milkweed so important to the monarch? Do monarchs have other host plants besides milkweed? Where does milkweed grow? How many species are there? How can you identify it? Can monarchs survive without milkweed? Where can you get milkweed? How do you grow milkweed? What is eating your milkweed?
Use the following resources to find the answers to these questions and much more! And as always, contact us if you have additional resources to share! More resources coming soon...
All About Milkweed
Learn about structure and pollination, leaf damage characteristics, growing tips, and identify common species of milkweed.
North American Milkweed Distribution
Find out which milkweed species are native to your specific county! The Biota of North America Program (BONAP) maintain an incredible database of locations of the Asclepias (milkweed) genus. Each milkweed species has its own map that shows the distribution status broken into individual counties. BONAP only provides the scientific name, so if you aren't sure what species is being shown, don't be deterred from this great site---just copy the scientific name and do a quick internet search for its common name:)
Milkweed Seed Finder
The Xerces Society has created a comprehensive, national directory of milkweed seed vendors. Native milkweeds (Asclepias spp.) are essential for Monarch Butterfly (Danaus plexippus) caterpillars and support a diversity of pollinators with their abundant nectar. By including milkweeds in gardens, landscaping, wildlife habitat restoration projects, and native revegetation efforts you can provide breeding habitat for Monarchs and a valuable nectar source for butterflies, bees, and other beneficial insects.
Monarch Watch contracts with native plant nurseries nationwide to sell milkweed plants, and only ships plants to the ecoregion from which their seeds originated.
Want to learn how to increase your milkweed numbers without having to buy more plants? Check out the Stewardship's Garden site for some great tips.