12 May 2022

An early sign of summer

The first Monarch butterfly of the year in Wisconsin was seen two days ago in Green County (on the Illinois border).  Today we found 29 Monarch eggs (the white dots on the undersurface of the leaves) on about a dozen 3-4" tall milkweed spears in our yard here in a suburb of Madison.

The plants in the photo are emerging between a concrete driveway and a granite boulder (the retained heat of both facilitates early germination from the underground rhizome).  The "No Mow May" policy is resulting in lots more milkweed being accessible to the Monarchs in the grassy lawn as well (more on this later).

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