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Proactive Conservation for Working Lands

Plant Recommendations for Monarch Butterflies in the Southern Plains

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For the monarch-friendly conservation plantings biologists recommend that 50 to 75 percent of plants come from this list with at least 3 percent of the plantings consisting of milkweed species. Milkweed is the only larval food source for the monarch butterfly. In the Southern Plains, milkweed species vary by soil type. The deep clay soils in the blackland prairie support green milkweed (Asclepias viridis) while antelope horns milkweed (Asclepias asperula) is more common on thinner limestone and caliche soils. Side-cluster milkweed (Asclepias oenotheroides) thrives in disturbed areas with thin soil and low vegetation across the region.

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