Did you see the Monarchs migrating north this spring? How about watching Monarchs returning through Texas this fall? Then perhaps you noticed that the numbers of migrating Monarchs were more diminished than in years past.
Texas provides critical habitat on the primary migration pathway to the Monarch’s wintering grounds in Mexico. The availability of milkweed host plants, so necessary to assure successive generations continuing north, has declined in Texas. Roundup Ready crops, mowing of roadsides, parks and open areas and continued drought have all had an impact on the number of Monarchs surviving for the southern journey to Mexico.
The Native Plant Society of Texas and MonarchWatch are partnering in an exciting new program called “Bring Back the Monarchs to Texas” (BBMT). The purpose of the program is to educate members and the public about Monarch conservation, to produce and distribute milkweeds that support reproduction by Monarch butterflies, and to restore Monarch habitats throughout the Texas migration flyway. The partnership will enable fundraising by chapters and local organizations who will be able to purchase milkweed for plant sales directly from the grower at cost.
Funding will be set aside for a grant program to be made available by application for Native Plant Society chapters, schools, nature centers and other organizations, creating additional habitat resources for the migrating Monarchs in the form of Monarch Waystations or demonstration gardens. A Bring Back the Monarchs to Texas fund has been established to collect donations to enable the BBMT grant program. Chapters and individuals who wish to donate to the BBMT fund may do so by donating online or by sending a check to our office designated for the BBMT fund.
A committee has been formed with representatives throughout Texas to direct volunteer efforts. Volunteers will collect milkweed seeds and send to growers while promoting and implementing milkweed demonstration gardens. Additionally, the committee will provide education to the public and to organizations on conservation of Monarch habitat, Monarch biology and Monarch butterfly gardening.
If you are interested in participating in this exciting new venture, there is a need for volunteers in all of the areas above. You may contact the Committee Chair who will direct you to the representative in your area. Please consider helping us bring back the Monarchs to Texas for future generations to enjoy!
To apply for a grant follow these procedures.