Daily Archives: February 10, 2015

U.S. Pledges $3.2 Million For Monarch Butterfly

IMG_4504“The federal government on Monday pledged $3.2 million to help save the monarch butterfly, the iconic orange-and-black butterfly that can migrate thousands of miles between the U.S. and Mexico each year. In recent years, the species has experienced a 90 percent decline in population, with the lowest recorded population occurring in 2013-2014.”

“About $2 million will help restore…habitat…including more than 750 schoolyard habitats and pollinator gardens. The rest will be used to start a conservation fund — the first dedicated solely to monarchs — that will provide grants to farmers and other landowners to conserve habitat.”

“The magic of the monarch butterfly is that little patches matter,” said US Fish and Wildlife Service Director Dan Ashe at a news conference in Washington. Piece by piece, he said, “we can make a difference on a continental scale.”

Monarch Caterpillar on MilkweedThe takeaway: PROTECT COMMON MILKWEED.        PLANT COMMON MILKWEED.

Read the full article: http://www.pbs.org/newshour/rundown/u-s-government-pledges-3-2-million-save-monarch-butterfly/

Beauty is Not Enough

Last week, at the 19th annual Plant-o-Rama, a symposium and trade show held by the Brooklyn Botanical Garden, the keynote speaker, an ecologist, told the crowd that beauty is not enough.

DSCN9969“We have to raise the bar on our landscapes,” said Mr. [Douglas] Tallamy, a professor and chairman of the department of entomology and wildlife ecology at the University of Delaware. “In the past, we have asked one thing of our gardens: that they be pretty. Now they have to support life, sequester carbon, feed pollinators and manage water.”

I’ve been part of the NJMC’s Parks Group for more than 20 years and this has always been our mission. From the earliest days at DeKorte Park, we have carefully selected plants to attract and support wildlife, control erosion, teach environmental education, be self-sustaining, AND be beautiful. It wasn’t easy back in the late 1980s when many native plants were simply not available in nurseries. Natives have gained a lot ground (pun intended) since then, and it’s great to know that the nursery industry is hearing the message.

Read the full NYTimes article.