Missourians for Monarchs

T-shirts and swag!

Missourinas for Monarchs has located a company and has contracted with them to make T-shirts and other monarch related items. A percentage of the sales on all itmes will be donated in the Missourins for Monarchs to help support projects. Get your stuff here:

Missourians 4 Monarchs stuff!!!

What Is It?

Our Chapter's involvement with Missourians for Monarchs all started when Glenn and Linda Commons attended a luncheon talk Bob Lee gave at the State Conference. He outlined the plan for various organizations including Master Naturalist, Master Gardener and Federated Garden Clubs to join in an effort to increase beneficial habitat for Monarch butterflies and why this effort is necessary.

At the next Chapter meeting, Glenn gave an overview of what he had learned and asked how many people would be willing to participate in establishing milkweed and nectar bearing native plant gardens to benefit Monarchs. Quite a few said they would and a meeting was scheduled to define our goals. Thirty-two members showed up for the first planning meeting. It was decided to find areas in which we could establish Monarch Butterfly Way Stations.

Ted Windels, with his connections at the School of the Osage, obtained permission to plant two Butterfly Way Stations; one at the high school and one behind the soccer field at the middle school. The instructor for the sophomore Environmental Science class at the high school and the sponsors for the middle school's Builders Club (8th and 9th graders) were enthusiastic to have their students help, as were the students.

Meanwhile, The Missouri Prairie Foundation offered plant seedlings through Missourians for Monarchs and we received three plant deliveries over the balance of the year. Many of these plants were distributed to Chapter members to either plant in their own gardens or to "babysit" until we could use them in planned Way Stations. Kathy Fayant grew Common Milkweed plants from seed. The Chapter approved a budget totaling $800.00 for plants, signs, chain, deer netting and fencing to establish and protect the gardens. Some more established plants were purchased from Missouri Wildflowers Nursery for use in the school gardens.

After much planning, we designated the two Way Station plots. We worked with the groundskeepers at the schools who helped by mowing one plot and providing top soil for both areas. Each garden covers about 400 square feet. Finally, it was planting day. On October 1st, Chapter volunteers helped prepare the very hard soil at the Middle School location, and with the help of over twenty students at each location we planted 76 plants in a swampy area at the high school and 102 plants at the middle school. Over fifteen Chapter volunteers have worked with the students in these projects. The students have continued to water the plants throughout the heat of October and early November.

Most recently, Ted and Glenn delivered about three cubic yards of mulch to the gardens. Several volunteers helped supervise 14 middle school students put mulch on the garden. The high school students put down their mulch without help from the Chapter. Which brings up why this is such a good partnership: the students have been watering and maintaining their respective gardens with only the guidance from their teacher/sponsor. Bonnie Kester and her committee had worked out a partnership agreement with the Osage Beach City Park, and they were interested in expanding their native garden with "butterfly plants". In late October, we were able to deliver over forty of those "babysat" plants to the Park and Park staff planted them.

Tricia Barrett and Joann Billington worked with the Laurie Park to establish a Way Station, and they also received plants from the Prairie Foundation through Missourians for Monarchs. All four of the gardens mentioned above received routed wooded signs that are 4' x 3' mounted on 4"x4" posts designating the gardens as Monarch Butterfly Way Stations and giving credit to the Lake of the Ozarks Master Naturalist Chapter and, at the two schools, the student organizations that helped with the planting.

Approximately twenty Chapter members have directly participated in working on our garden projects, and even more have planted milk week and nectar bearing plants in their own gardens. The goal for the next five years is to dramatically increase milkweed in Missouri. Many cities are designating planting areas with Kansas City and St. Louis leading the way. Utility companies, highway maintenance organizations and farm related organizations are also getting on board.

The organization Bob Lee started: Missourians for Monarchs, has offered the name to a new state run consortium which will head up a more formal plan for 2016 and beyond. Bob's association of Master Naturalist chapters and garden clubs is looking for a new name. If you have any ideas, let Glenn know. Plans for 2016

  1. Our first activity next year will be to organize as many Chapter members as we can to start milk weed plants from seed in preparation for expanding our garden efforts.
  2. Next will be to assess what the winter has done to our four existing gardens and fill in areas where plants have not survived.
  3. We already have a commitment from the Osage Beach City Park to establish a new MBWS which will be larger than all of the four gardens already established.
  4. We are actively searching for additional plots of land on which we can establish Monarch Butterfly Way Stations.
  5. We will have a booth at the Camdenton Farmer's Market selling milk weed plants, handing out flyers and informing the public of the Missourians for Monarch program and what they can do to help.
  6. Find a Chapter member to take over Glenn's position as Monarch Chapter lead. Glenn has accepted a position with Bob Lee's organization as a Regional Coordinator covering a multi-county area. Pay is the same as his previous position.