The Green Milkweed Patch


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A cute little jumping spider…

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Large milkweed bugs, Oncopeltus fasciatus

The green milkweed patch around the corner from our house has been the highlight of these weeks in isolation. Someone mowed the empty lot this year which was good. I had been contemplating doing it myself because grass and shrubs were encroaching on the milkweed and I wanted to increase the milkweed habitat. This year the milkweed is thriving!

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Lovebug with a bumble bee in the background.

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This lot is where I’ve primarily gone to get milkweed for the monarch caterpillars the last few years. I’m raising 16 caterpillars this season, eggs harvested from our tropical milkweed. Our tropical milkweed is of course too small at the moment to handle the onslaught of caterpillar chomping so I moved the eggs I could find.

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Zebra Longhorn Beetle, Typocerus zebra
The patch is alive with all sorts of insects out pollinating or eating, like this zebra longhorn beetle. A very cool find!

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Of course the monarchs drop by as well!

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This patch is just so lovely! I’m also trying not to get too attached because Chris informed me there’s a chance that the owners may sell it. I had been wondering about that. There’s an old house pad and driveway at the site. A few years ago our county jacked up the land values which made everyone who had been holding on to adjacent acreage, even just half an acre, up and try to sell their property. That has changed the face of our little community because now everyone is cramming in more houses. The property directly across the street from us has been affected and it seems this lot may be too. Drive the prices up to increase development to increase their tax base to increase money to increase highway development to increase box stores…and on and on and on.

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American Bumble Bee, Bombus pensylvanicus

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This little patch really is just a bright spot in my day when I go and visit—which I need to do again today to get more milkweed. I’ll be sure to take my camera along again to see what I can find!

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3 thoughts on “The Green Milkweed Patch

  1. shoreacres says:

    The ‘vacant lot’ where I’ve found milkweed and ladies tresses and on and on is for sale, too. It’s in quite an odd place, though — down near Hall’s bayou. I don’t think there’s any threat of commercial development, but you never know. The suburbs are creeping.

    No matter how hard I try, I can’t bring myself to appreciate lovebugs. They ruin my varnish when they’re around, and are a terrible trial. However! They’re late risers, and don’t get up until about 10. Then, they go back to bed around 4 or 5 in the afternoon, so sometimes they can be avoided. I never thought I’d have a job when I had to schedule my work around insects.

  2. Moosie says:

    Maybe you should dig up some and plant in your yard. This type is interesting. The leaves are almost like the tropical. But I see a difference. And the blooms are different. Pretty. Does this get as tall as the tropical?

  3. Anna K says:

    Ugh, sounds just like here… Except any vacant, green patch would have been snapped up already and crammed full of buildings, maximizing the legally “buildable area”. No real room left for green spaces. Best of luck to you. Take seeds if you can, and start planting milkweed in your own garden, to prepare for any future development. I heard milkweeds prefer good air circulation, so they are not a good plant for abundantly lush flower beds. They do better on the edges…

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