PLANTING MILKWEED FOR MONARCHS IS VITAL!
To help foster the creation of habitat for the monarch butterfly, Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative (OPHI), in cooperation with Ohio Soil and Water Conservation Districts is organizing a Statewide Milkweed Pod Collection this year starting September 1st and ending October 31st.
Milkweed is essential to the survival of monarch butterflies in Ohio and Ohio is a priority area for monarchs. The monarch butterflies that hatch here in the summer migrate to Mexico for the winter and are responsible for starting the life cycle all over again in the spring.
Since 2015, volunteers have collected approximately 5000 gallons of common milkweed seed pods, totaling over 22 million seeds! Milkweed is the only host plant for the Monarch butterfly for egg laying and caterpillar rearing. It also serves as a food source for Monarchs as well as many other pollinator species. The disappearance of milkweed across the U.S. has contributed to the 80% decline of the eastern monarch butterfly population over the last 20 years.
During September - October, everyone is encouraged to collect Common Milkweed pods from established plants and drop them off at a pod collection station. The majority of Ohio counties have a Milkweed Pod Collection Station, most of them being located at the local Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD) office such as the Cuyahoga Soil & Water Conservation District. See list of other SWCD's collecting pods below.
COLLECTING SEED PODS
Drop Common Milkweed pods off between 8:30am - 4:30pm to:
3311 Perkins Ave, Suite 100
Cleveland, OH 44114
After Hours: Leave them in the drop off bin located on the west side of the building by garage door - off E. 33rd St.
Questions, contact Amy: 216/524-6580, x1005; firstname.lastname@example.org
Other SWCD's collecting Common Milkweed pods:
Check with your local Soil and WAter Conservation District to see if they are collecting Common Milkweed pods. However, you can always take them to any district's collection, they do not have to go to the county you collected them in or live in.
When we know which ones are doing the collection this year, we will post it here.