Monday, November 10, 2014

Timing is Everything

I discovered these two monarch caterpillars on my aphid infested Mexican milkweed a few days ago. Mamma monarch had bad timing with her egg laying because winter is coming a little early this year. Our first frost is usually around November 17, but an arctic cold front is bringing freezing temperatures this week.
That may not be good news for the caterpillars. I did not see them today, so maybe they found a place to form their respective chrysalises. I have seen swallowtail chrysalises survive through the winter and hatch in the spring. I am not sure if monarchs will do the same.

I planted garlic yesterday and picked the last of the green beans, black-eyed peas, and peppers. I guess I am about as ready for winter as I can be, but it sure would be nice to extend the autumn season a little longer. I usually try to protect some plants through the first couple of early frosts and cold spells because the temperatures usually rebound within a couple of days. I don't think I will bother this time because the forecasters are saying that it could be cold for the rest of the month.

So, goodbye butterflies, goodbye bees, and goodbye flowers. It was a good year. I will see you again in the spring. 

4 comments:

  1. Goodbye beautiful little prairie and have a nice rest until spring. It's getting cold early again this year!

    I spotted a monarch on my milkweed yesterday but didn't see any eggs. We will be close to freezing on Friday which is about two weeks early.

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  2. I'm a little bummed the cold is coming early this year as my brugs are sending out another round of blooms and my formosa lilies are doing the same. But, I just can't keep up with a 2 month old, so really it is probably for the best that it all goes dormant a little early.

    Hope your monarchs make it!

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  3. I'm going into my pupa stage. Thanks for your observations through the seasons.

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  4. I know just how you feel! I'm so sorry for the butterflies, bees and wasps that got caught. And us, too! I agree with you--not sure I'll do succession plantings this time around.

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