Asclepias incarnata sprouting

butterflymomok(7a NE OK)April 4, 2013

We are having prolonged winter here in Oklahoma, with below average temps. During the past week, we have had over 5 inches of rain. This rain is long overdue. Today I ventured out on the spongy lawn to check for returning milkweed. Last year's milkweed was up by now, and I had eggs. I found that the Swamp Milkweed is putting up shoots of new growth. So, there will be LFP available for the Monarchs when they arrive. I also have a couple of flats of A curassavica setting out. I went back and checked my records on Journey North--yes, you can check your reports--for the past 5 years. It's interesting to see the dates I reported the first MW sightings and first Monarch sightings. This year is not the latest for milkweed. Last year, we definitely had an early spring.

I hope that you will report your sightings to Journey North for your area of the country.

Sandy

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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

Sandy, I've never reported my monarch sightings to Journey North, but I will this year. Last year I not only sighted, but got eggs from a spring monarch, unusual for this area.

Congrats on the rain and the sprouting swamp milkweed, especially the rain! And I know what you mean about a prolonged winter with below average temps. After a dry spell and warm temps, we had 1.7" of rain, and it's cloudy and 60 degrees now, dreary, but I was glad for the rain. I knew the rain was coming, so I planted a lot of plants and set out some seeds, which will benefit from the rain.

I don't know what butterflies and bees use for a hidey hole, but before we had the cool front, there were bees EVERYWHERE and I saw many butterflies. On this cloudy, cool day, they're practically gone!

Sherry

    Bookmark   April 4, 2013 at 3:49PM
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butterflymomok(7a NE OK)

Sherry,

I know what you mean. I often wonder where the butterflies spend the cold, wet days. Tomorrow, our temps will finally top 70 degrees again. 70 degree days have been few and far between. I'll get out and look for leps as I can't work the soil--too wet. Probably have to wear boots, LOL. I have some bugs on my list to try to find this spring. At least, I can keep the Asclepias curassavica seedlings out on the patio as it isn't supposed to freeze again until next week. I need to put a piece of black plastic under them and the tomatoes to create some warmth.

I think it's a good idea that everyone on the forum report their sightings. I'll be encouraging people in my posts this year.

Sandy

    Bookmark   April 4, 2013 at 6:28PM
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mary_littlerockar(8a-7b mid Arkansas)

Went to report my A. incarnata sprouts, up about 2 inches now, but the sighting report needs a photo so will have to wait until tomorrow.

While it has been damp and cold here off and on the past couple of weeks, I think we've turned the page toward spring. I spotted some Butterfly weed nubbins pushing up today. No sign of common MW yet and it's usually the first MW I notice in spring.

Mary

    Bookmark   April 7, 2013 at 9:17PM
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butterflymomok(7a NE OK)

Mary,

I'm surprised they need a photo. Maybe they want to post a photo and use your report in the weekly news. I haven't seen any butterfly weed popping up yet. This is such a slow spring. We have more cold weather coming through later in the week.

Sandy

    Bookmark   April 8, 2013 at 1:20PM
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PKponder TX(7b)

We have a incarnata that has already reached 12 inches tall. It is a bumper crop for my shady garden with more than a dozen seedlings! I am really happy that the intermittent freezes haven't harmed it. I have never seen any eggs on it but in years past there were only a couple of plants in the area that I scattered seed 3 years ago.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 5:44AM
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butterflymomok(7a NE OK)

PK, that is great. Texas is seeing Monarchs so it's good that food has sprouted. Even if you don't find eggs, you have the plants for food. I find an occasional egg on the incarnata, but I do find caterpillars on the plants, and I use the leaves to feed caterpillars I bring in to raise. Here's to a great Monarch season!

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 1:51PM
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