Archive for Monday, May 5, 2014

Monarch Watch open house and plant fundraiser set for Saturday

May 5, 2014


If you go

What: Monarch Watch open house and plant fundraiser

When: Saturday, May 11, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Where: Foley Hall, located on Cromwell Avenue on KU's West Campus

Admission: Free

For more information

For a complete list of plants available at Saturday's open house, go to

The monarch butterfly population has been in decline for more than 20 years, and, according to new research by the World Wildlife Fund, the numbers are now at a record low.

Monarch Watch, a Kansas University-based program aimed at conserving and researching the Monarch butterfly, is making efforts to reverse the population decline, which it attributes to a combination of factors, one being the loss of land that supports the milkweed plant, the host plant for monarch caterpillars.

The public is invited to get a tour of Monarch Watch’s gardens and labs and to learn more about its efforts at an open house event this Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Foley Hall on KU’s West Campus.

Refreshments will be provided at the free event. In addition to a tour of the facilities, attendees can see tarantulas and bees, and kids can play games and have their faces painted.

Monarch Watch will have more than 5,000 annual and perennial plants available at the event. There is no cost for the plants, but contributions are suggested.

The available plants are ideal for butterfly gardens, according to Monarch Watch, because they provide nectar for adult monarchs and other pollinators, including birds and bees. The loss of these plants, which make up the pollinator habitat, threatens monarch migration.

Chip Taylor, the director of Monarch Watch, said the organization is currently working to distribute 40,000 milkweed seeds of different varieties to people throughout the U.S. Last year, the organization sent out a total of 21,000 seeds during the spring and fall seasons.


Paul Cherubini 4 years, 1 month ago

The Monarch Watch is a product sales oriented business. They use teaser words like "we distribute" instead of "we sell". Another teaser is that after you buy a milkweed seed kit for $16.00 or a flat of milkweed seedlings for $58.00, you are then urged to purchase of milkweed waystation certification and sign for $33.00 In recent news articles Dr. Chip Taylor said he would like to see 7-10 million milkweed waystations created. If that goal was achieved and the Monarch Watch made $15-30 profit per customer, one can see they could make $105,000,000 - $210,000,000 in profits.

And that's not all. Dr. Taylor coauthored this article about seeking many hundreds of millions of dollars in federal government funding for milkweed planting projects: Excerpt: "if the seed costs per acre are kept at $100-150, the overall costs of seeds alone would be $100-150 million for a million acres." And their planting goal is 10-20 million acres. So the project cost to the taxpayers could hit 2 billion dollars for just the seed alone. And then there are adminstrative and labor costs on top of that.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.