The monarch butterfly is an important pollinator species that helps to pollinate our food crops. It is also an indicator species and its numbers are declining - an indication that our environment is not healthy. About 80% of agricultural food production for humans depends on pollinator species and we are losing them. You can help all pollinators and the monarch butterflies! Plant only pesticide-free plants in your garden and practice pollinator-friendly gardening and yard design.
Certain species of milkweed provide a necessary food source for the monarchs. Visit the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) website and use their Milkweed Finder to determine what species of milkweed you should plant for your area. You can also talk with your local nursery. Plant as much pesticide-free milkweed seed as you possibly can, to include these species recommended by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF):
Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca)
Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)
Butterfly Milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa)
Whorled Milkweed (Asclepias verticillata)
Poke Milkweed (Asclepias exaltata)
You can also get involved with local community efforts to save pollinator species. By helping them, we contribute to our well-being and we help our beautiful earth!
Other Resources to help save the Monarchs: Monarch Watch (Monarch Watch is a nonprofit education, conservation, and research program based at the University of Kansas)