Monarch butterflies are increasingly having a difficult time maintaining their population. One factor influencing their survival, is the limited about of their only food which is milkweed. We have a natural stand of milkweed in one of our fields which we have designated as a sanctuary for milkweed; meaning that we will let the patch grow with out any interference. A patch of milkweed will gradually expand over several years by the growth of underground stems. We are going to allow this patch to expand and we have the space to allow for this.
Monarch butterflies lay their eggs on milkweed plants and the larvae of the monarch butterfly feeds only on milkweed plants. Other insects will visit the milkweed blossoms like honeybees.
Milkweed plants can become a beautiful addition to a perennial flower garden as long as you are prepared for the underground stem expansion of the milkweed plant and are wiling to either allow it to expand or willing to keep it trimmed back so that its expansion is limited.