Seed giveaway hopes to keep butterflies in Valley

Local News

The seeds are being given out for a $2 donation

CANFIELD, Ohio (WKBN) – Springtime means the flowers bloom, and when that happens the butterflies flock, or will they?

The monarch butterfly population is down 90% from 20 years ago, and they’re considered endangered.

To help repopulate some of those monarchs in our area, the Mahoning County Extension office is offering milkweed seeds for people to grow and attract monarchs.

OSU Extension Educator Eric Barrett says a lot of people have taken an interest in the butterflies, which is one reason they are selling the seeds.

One group of people who don’t like milkweed is farmers. A lot of pesticides kill it off, but the butterflies use that milkweed to lay their eggs.

“The milkweed plant has been killed in a lot of areas. It’s toxic to a lot of livestock, so we want to do what we can to bring some of that back to sustain that population. The plant and the monarch are just directly related. One can’t exist without the other,” Barrett said.

The seeds are being given out for a $2 donation. Each packet contains 50 seeds and they come with instructions.

Where you plant is important. You’ll want lots of sun, little wind because the butterflies will get blown away and not too close to your garden or home because they do grow underground.

Seeds can be picked up at OSU Extension Office, 490 S. Broad St., Canfield. For questions, please call 330-533-5538.

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