Last weekend (May 1-3), around 200 Missouri Master Naturalists enjoyed three days of Advanced Training in Springfield, Missouri. Congratulations to this year’s host chapter—Springfield Plateau—for a terrific educational experience.
During the weekend, around 20 representatives from the statewide chapters met to discuss how Missourians for Monarchs would share best practices, seeds and other resources to achieve the goal of expanding habitat for monarchs migrating through Missouri.
The enthusiasm and impressive expertise at propagating milkweed and rearing monarchs among partners coming on board is astounding. In future blog posts, we will highlight the many ways various Master Naturalists, Master Gardeners, Garden Clubs and others are contributing to monarch recovery.
Joining the partnership is as easy as sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and asking to be included on the mailing list. There is no hard and fast commitment.
What is generally expected of Missourians for Monarchs partners?
Set your own goals (in square feet if known) for planting milkweed and nectar habitats.
Let Missourians for Monarchs know (GPS coordinates or map locations) where you intend to plant…along with the locations of existing habitat in your region. (So that a statewide map can be constructed to make sure there are sufficient waystations throughout the flyway.)
Participate in citizen science monitoring.
And, if you wish to do more…
Educate your community about the plight of monarchs.
Enroll others in planting milkweed and nectar plants.
If you can, collect milkweed seed in the fall.
Encourage local nurseries to grow more milkweed.
Advocate with local electric coops and hiway departments to plant along roadsides.
Share your progress via photos and emails to Missourians for Monarchs.
What is the value of partnership?
Partnering enables sharing best practices for selecting sites and for planting and growing milkweed.
Partnering enables economies of scale for plants and seed purchases.
Funders look favorably on a common goal that unites and is supported by responsible, tested organizations. The more funding received, the more seeds and plants will be made available to partners.
Partnering is a way to enable those who wish to “get started” with a monarch focus to come up to speed quickly. Help is a phone call away!
Shared resources (brochures, displays, teaching kits) can be passed around to organizations. No “wheel re-invention” by every group.
There is the potential to share the cost of signage to indicate monarch habitat (no mow zones), which can save money for everyone.
Many voices have a greater chance to bring about change in hiway or power right of way mowing practices.
How will Missourians for Monarchs serve its Partners?
Channel pertinent information to partners according to their interests and goals
Provide assistance with site selection, mapping, seed sourcing and growing, and with rearing and monitoring monarchs.
Provide assistance with education outreach (materials and speakers).
Maintain statewide maps of opportunity areas and planted areas to ensure appropriate coverage
New understandings about monarch biology gained by partners will be collected by the Missourians for Monarchs Science Advisor and shared with national partners
Seek grants to purchase seeds, plants, and signage to be shared with partners.
Keep partners “in the loop” via a monthly e-newsletter, Facebook posts, and this blog.
Highlight and draw media attention to collective and individual achievements via press releases.
Please send questions or comments to email@example.com or comment to this blog.