At Natureworks, we are doing everything we can to help
support monarch butterflies. We now have seeds for FIVE
types of Asclepias species, including
. These seeds need a chill
period (stratification) to germinate. Stop by on Seedy
, and buy your seeds. Plant them and
put them in a cold garage or outbuilding or cold frame
for 6 weeks and then they will be ready to sprout.
Count on the staff of Natureworks to teach you all
about it when you come in to shop. Along with Asclepias
species (which are the larval food plants for monarch
we also sell plants and seeds of the
nectarflowers that monarchs and other butterflies
enjoy. You can buy mixes or individual varieties of
their most-loved flowers such as zinnias, Verbena,
black eyed Susans, Mexican sunflowers, Coreopsis,
cosmos, Echinacea, anise hyssop, and so much more. We
also raise and release other types of butterflies.
Eastern black swallowtail butterflies use dill, fennel,
and parsley as their larval food plants. You guessed
it, these are all easily grown from seed as well. My
favorite dill is from Seed Saver’s Exchange and is
called ‘Grandma Einck’s’. It produces massive flower
heads. I let my dill go to seed and find it self sows
readily once established in my gardens. Dill flowers
are also a really great nectar source for pollinators
and beneficial insects.
I usually direct seed zinnias into the garden
when the soil has completely warmed up, in mid-late
May. We do carry starter plants for many zinnias, but
if you are really looking for unusual varieties, seed
is the way to go. We have 24 varieties of zinnia seeds
on our racks!