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Monarch Trail Building: How to hold a milkweed seed & fluff party

From Join us Sunday, October 26, 2014, 1-3 p.m.

SEED COLLECTING AND PROCESSING: The list of the milkweeds we are targeting for restoration are mainly Common (Asclepius syriaca), and swamp (Asclepius incarnate). Collect the pods—preferably in paper bags—and bring them to the collection site: (Barb and Dick’s Wildflower Florist, 12326 W. Watertown Plank Rd.)  There is a collection bin on the west side of the building.

Please use a separate container for the seeds of each milkweed species.  To be sure that the seeds you collect are used in your region, we need the following information on each seed collection bag:  Your name, address and email, date of collection, county and state of collection and species of milkweed (i.e., common, swamp, etc.)

We encourage you to recruit your class, school, scout group, neighborhood association etc. to organize a collection project.  The end of September through October is the best time to collect pods.

WHAT, WHEN AND WHERE TO COLLECT MILKWEED SEED PODS: Collect only the milkweed species targeted for your region.  When the pods are first beginning to split (ripe but as yet to open pods should split upon touch and the seeds should be brown or “browning up”).  Do not collect pods in which the seeds are white, cream colored or pale.

Be sure to obtain permission before collecting on private property or federal, state or county properties. Be safe. Please do not collect along busy highways.

Collect as much as you can!  Many pounds of milkweed seeds are needed for seed mixes used in roadside or landscape restoration.  Two to four onion bags of pods will yield about one pound of seeds.

ADVISORIES: Milkweed sap can damage your eyes.  The initial irritation is a bit painful followed by a cloudiness of the cornea which can take a week to clear up.  You don’t want this to happen to you or anyone who works with you.  Wear gloves while collecting milkweed pods and avoid contacting your face, or region of the eyes, with the gloves.  Wash your hands carefully after handling milkweed pods.  Should milkweed sap get into your eyes or that of a fellow collector, seek medical attention immediately.

Once collected—we will dry them and hold a Milkweed Shucking event so everyone can come help separate the seeds from the fluff.  This is REALLY fun!  The Milkweed Shucking date is Sunday, October 26, 1 pm-3 pm at the Monarch Trail (visit our website for a map).  Look for the colorful flags and you will find us and the fluff!


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Central Texas Gardener host: “Everybody thinks of native plants as smart choices now”

Published on Oct 7, 2014

Why is it so important to plant native plants? Cathy Downs from the Native Plant Society of Texas illustrates how to save water, beautify our vision, and feed our valuable wildlife all year long. Host: Tom Spencer.

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Army Corps of Engineers message explains intent of Oregon controlled burn

Published on Oct 3, 2014

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Part-time job available at Palmyra Environmental Learning Center

I’m spreading the word on behalf of “Prairie Bob” Ahrenhoerster that the Milwaukee Public School System’s Palmyra Environmental Learning Center is looking for part-time help and paying $12/hour.
No particular experience or education is required. Enthusiasm for the environment, a friendly attitude toward children, and a willingness to learn are key.
Hours are variable and not extensive. This is a perfect opportunity for a retired individual looking to get some physical activity, learn new things, and make the world a better place.
To learn more about the center, visit
For more information about the job, contact Nicole at (414) 647-6043.
Please share this news with your friends.
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Introduction to native plants video highlights some attractive and beneficial plants

Published on July 10, 2014

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Experimenting to farm a profit from prairie restoration

Published on Jul 3, 2014  |  In the United States, we have lost most of the tallgrass prairie. Learn more about how we are making positive changes and reestablishing biodiversity. The project has been successful and continues to make great strides in a healthier ecosystem, while providing nutritious grass-raised beef.

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“They thought I was getting weeds,” but look at this native plant yard now

Published on Jun 20, 2013  |  Get Wild, Go Native! Native gardening is good for our air, our water and us. Join our “Go Native” group to learn about all of the ways you can “Get Wild” in your life! Sign up at to receive monthly “Plant This, Not That” gardening tips and updates on new featured gardens from across the Midwest.

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