Need to mark this in the gardening journal (that’s what this blog is!). Today, May 18 at about 11am I saw our first real monarch activity around the crown flower. It’s been months we haven’t had much, and today I rescued 6 itty bitty caterpillars and put them in the IKEA mesh hamper for safety from birds until they decide to leave and make their chrysalis.
That’s me. Out in the yard or the carport every morning talking to my little critters. 😀
There’s been so much caterpillar, chrysalis, butterfly activity in the lately! We rescued 20+ caterpillars from the crown flower and they are now all either in chrysalis form or have already hatched. Many of them leave the little mesh hamper I put them, as the one below, braving the terrain across the yard to go hang by another one, who has already made a chrysalis on the aloe plant.
Our crown flower is HUGE. And I started noticing a lot of bird activity on the plant and I felt super mad all of a sudden. No! This is not a buffet for birds! Those little caterpillars are endangered and there’s plenty of other bugs, fruit and berries for you to eat over there in the forest. Get out of here!
So I took my scissors outside and started cutting leaves to rescue all the little caterpillars I could find. And today I found 7. There’s evidence of many more, but I’m afraid I was too slow.
They are in various stages of growth but I think in the next two weeks we should be releasing seven new butterflies! 🙂
Our countertop is now a hatchery! And if you ever wondered what do to with those old diskette boxes from the 90’s, here’s a plan:
For earlier discussion on our mission to save as many monarch butterflies as possible: