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A French-Inspired Garden and Home by Judith Stringham

Monarch Butterfly Season

Friday, May 6, 2016

I have a dream to see the Monarch butterflies over wintering by the hundreds of thousands in Mexico.

To see them pulsate as one quivering orange and yellow blanket covering entire trees, to see them flutter above their hibernating mass when warm sun rays reach the high Mexico altitudes, and to see the bright sunlit sky darken with the shadows of thousands of Monarchs gliding around the butterfly preserve...

One day... Monarchs in Mexico in late February.


Until then, I watch for them as they fly through my area on their way to Canada.

Monarch butterfly season is in full migration mode in Texas. Each spring Monarchs fly through Texas on their trek northward to summer in Canada before making the migration trek back to Mexico in the fall.


Monarchs replenish their energy in Texas by sipping on the milkweed blooms of over 30 species of native milkweeds that grow in Texas. The most common variety, green milkweed, is the kind that grows in my small pocket prairie. 


In the past there had been a billion, yes... B I L L I O N ... Monarch butterflies that made the annual migration. In recent years scientist have been concerned about the drastic reduction of numbers of Monarch butterflies. The good news is scientists have reported a significant increase in the 2016 population, but still far below a billion. 


The Fort Worth Botanical Garden has a butterfly exhibit in March every two years in its botanical conservatory. This spring a good friend and I celebrated my birthday with lunch in Fort Worth followed by a visit to this year's butterfly exhibit. 

Not quite as spectacular as hundreds of thousands of Monarchs in Mexico, but still spectacular with hundreds of butterflies flitting all around the conservatory. 


The Botanical Garden's gift shop always has butterfly items including this award-winning children's book, The Life Cycles of Butterflies, and an identification fan of Butterflies of the World. 



Perfect shades of blue and purple punctuated with white mean the Pipevine Swallowtail is my favorite butterfly described in the book. 



Butterflies fascinate me! 

Here's a little peek at some things I'm working on for the upcoming Art and Craft Retreat for Texas bloggers in June at Jemma's house (At Home With Jemma) in north Texas. Butterflies, watercolors, butterfly stamps... 

I don't want to spoil all the surprises for the Retreat, but these give you a hint at a craft I will be sharing with everyone who attends. 


These also give you a BIG hint about fun giveaways. 

Oh, all right, this is more than a HINT. There WILL be prizes!

This year... 

Butterfly exhibit at the Fort Worth Botanical Gardens... 

Monarch butterfly sightings in the backyard... 

Texas blogger Art and Craft Retreat at Jemma's...


O N E  D A Y...

Monarch butterflies in Mexico... 

Interested in where to buy a swallowtail butterfly rubber stamp {affiliate}, a fandex of Butterflies of the World {affiliate}, and The Life Cycles of Butterflies?{affiliate} Just click on the links. With summer coming up, you may like these to use with crafts for your children or grandchildren. The fandex pages can be separated to use as individual book markers. 


More outstanding readings and videos about Monarch butterflies...
Provided as information with no affiliation. 

Monarch Butterfly Migration Through Texas

Map of Monarch Butterfly Sightings 2016

Monarch Butterfly on YouTube

Monarch Butterfly Information on a Travel Website


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Please join me at these inspiring places for more joy of living. 

SUNDAY
Dishing It and Digging It @ Rustic and Refined

MONDAY

TUESDAY

8 comments:

Laura Ingalls Gunn said...

Just beautiful Judith! A few months ago I planted a butterfly garden to give a helping hand to our precious pollinators and it has just started to bloom this past week. Can't wait to see our orange and black winged friends.

Castles Crowns and Cottages said...

And one day, we'll understand why these paper-thin creatures do this. One day.

Marilyn said...

Have you ever been to the Butterfly-Flutterby festival in Grapevine? It happens each fall (October, I believe) and is quite interesting and fun. I also plant for the butterflies and hope to see some Monarchs very soon.

Marilyn (in Dallas)

cindy@bornhouseliving said...

The Monarch butterflies are beautiful, and I can see why the Pipevine Swallowtail is your favorite! I'm sure you will enjoy yourself at the exhibit, and I'll keep my fingers crossed for Mexico;) Btw, your post was delivered! Have a great day, Judith:)

Laura said...

This is fascinating information Judith.
Thank you!
I didn't realize there is a butterfly festival in Grapevine-

Stacey said...

A wonderful and informative post, as always my friend. The City of Rockwall has adopted a monarch initiative and I'm one of the volunteers. A park is actually going to be right here in our neighborhood and I'm so excited!

Botanic Bleu said...

Stacey,
Hoping there will be photos on your blog about the park and your work as a volunteer!
Judith

Linda Perry said...

my husband and I had the pleasure of going to one of the monarch reserves abut 10 years ago. The fir trees droop with them and though many are quiet in the chilly weather a few do flutter around and land on you. Go when you're young- the parking lots are far away to protect them and you go up the mountain on rubbly paths in high altitude so you are out of breath. They also had pack horses to rent but I wasn't going to do that!