2018-08-30 / Nature


Butterfly milkweed Butterfly milkweed Milkweeds are an American genus of over 140 species of herbaceous perennial plants. Comparable to orchids in their complexity, they are an important nectar source for other pollinators, including native bees, some species of wasps, beetles and moths.

Despite the plant’s toxicity, milkweeds have been used as substitute insulation for life jackets, pillows and down jackets. Its fibers are also used to make rope and clean up oil spills.

Planting milkweed in gardens attracts butterflies and other native pollinators. The plant is available at local nurseries and garden retailers.

Monarch Watch, a nonprofit based out of the University of Kansas, offers free milkweeds for larger scale (two acres or more) restoration projects. Visit their website at monarchwatch.org. For further information locally, contact the Newport Tree Conservancy at 401-324-9204.

Common milkweed Common milkweed

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