Milkweed flower – 6/27/15

Observer: Paul Lauenstein

Observation Date: 6/27/15

Observation Time: 2:45 p.m.

Observation Location: Gavins Pond area

Common Name: Milkweed flower

Scientific Name: Asclepias syriaca

Comments: Many species of butterflies including monarchs depend on milkweed as a food source for their caterpillars. The advent of genetically modified “Roundup-ready” corn and soybeans has facilitated large-scale application of herbicides, reducing the availability of milkweed to migrating monarchs. Hence, the monarch population is in steep decline. Homeowners wanting to help monarchs can inadvertently hurt them by planting the wrong kind of milkweed (Ophryocystis elektroscirrha). Unfortunately, native milkweed that monarchs need is harder to propagate.

More Information: Science