Saturday, August 18, 2018


If you've been following Comptonia for a while, you may recall that I've been trying to establish milkweed plants for several years. They are very interesting plants all year round, and I photograph them often. In the winter, there is usually a dry stalk or two in a jug on a windowsill.

For many years there have been a few milkweed plants up by the goat barn - at least, I think they are milkweed plants - but they have never produced flowers in that shady spot. So when two plants appeared a few years ago on the steep, sunny bank next to the terrace vegetable garden, I took care to protect them.

Last year, instead of two plants, there were a few. I saved some of the seeds and scattered them on the other side of the driveway - one of the last holdouts for bittersweet because it's not fenced, and it's hard for me to let the goats browse there.

July 2018

This year, enough milkweed plants sprouted that I felt that the population was established and I can start balancing a bit. In fact, there were enough plants growing on both sides of the driveway that I took a few down that had appeared right in the garden, shading the new raised bed.

The main reason I have tried to establish a milkweed "stand" is in hopes of bringing back the Monarch butterflies.

And yesterday, for the first time, in the big vegetable garden:

Yes, it is a Monarch.

 It is a Monarch on a zinnia.

The milkweed is only a few feet away, so maybe it will go there next.

Nope. Another zinnia!

I'm sure it knows where the milkweed is.

I was taking these photographs from such a distance, I could not even be sure it was a Monarch - or that any of the images would be in focus - until I put them on the laptop last night. So happy to see these snaps!

Let's hope it will be the first of many sightings.