Thursday, September 9, 2010
Monarchs and the Plants They Use
While we're on the topic of Monarchs let's discuss some nectar plants. The Meadow Liatris, Liatris ligulistylis, has stopped blooming. Though I planted a bunch this spring because they were stored in a green house to long only the former plants from last year bloomed. Even with two flower heads I had monarchs on them!
Asters are coming along but not quite there yet. Another plant in the Aster family that has started blooming though is Goldenrod. Solidago is a huge genus of very similar looking plants that are notorious for hybridizing.
Solidago rugosa 'fireworks' is blooming nicely but I find it shocking that nothing is working this young plant. More established plants are more bush-like and fuller looking. It's another case of wait and see.
There are numerous videos and pictures online of Monarchs, and many other pollinators, covering Goldenrod in mass. I suspect Solidago canadensis and similar species are the main plant here.
The patch of Solidago gigantea I have is loaded with flower buds but has yet to bloom. It's a monster of a patch too. I've pegged it as the last plant in my garden to bloom as it normally does so well into November. It's a real highlight having what is possibly the only flowering plant for miles around as it's generally covered in bees.