A garden is the best alternative therapy.

This is a first for the garden and a welcome one at that!  Sunday morning I discovered a bright striped caterpillar on the butterfly weed and I thought I was right to identify it as a Monarch.  As it turns out, I was wrong and it isn’t a Monarch, but a Queen caterpillar.   (Thanks for setting me straight, Carol!) Yes, a happy Queen butterfly found our garden and laid an egg, giving rise to a beautiful queen caterpillar.   I’m glad at least one has found its way into the garden.   We have a total of forty milkweed plants in the garden, though only about six of them are currently flowering.  We started the others from seed earlier in the summer and transplanted them about a month ago.  They’re getting bigger now, and hopefully they’ll be a good-size by the early part of October to attract more Queens and, HOPEFULLY, monarchs, which typically migrate through Central Texas!

Queen caterpillar on Butterfly Weed

Milkweed bed along south-facing fence

Asclepias Curassavica seeds obtained from livemonarch.org


Comments on: "Queen Caterpillar in the Garden" (12)

  1. This is a really really great butterfly weed. I much prefer it over the tuberosa. My tropical milkweed self seeded everywhere and that was great. Lots of cats too. In fact, they ate all the milkweed and I might not get seedlings next year:(

    • roundrockgarden said:

      the only tuberosa i have in the garden is the same plant the monarch queen found its way to! well, it also just so happens to be the largest milkweed i currently have at four feet tall and three feet in diameter! the curassavicas that are blooming have also just produced pods and i’ve saved many seeds for next year as well. if all of these plants make it to seed, i just might be able to give a lot of seeds away and help provide a safe haven for the struggling monarch population! well, that’s my goal anyway!

  2. Congratulations on the new addition to your garden! I can’t wait to see that impressive row of Milkweed in bloom–gorgeous!

    • roundrockgarden said:

      i know, me neither! but alas, i’ve read that they typically don’t flower from seed the first year, so i suppose i WILL have to wait! 🙂

  3. It’ll be worth the wait. That’s going to be lovely!

  4. just found your blog and i love it…..

  5. I didn’t know monarch caterpillars look this beautiful. Nice shots!

  6. Hi Joseph! Great crop of milkweed!! That will be beautiful and attract tons of caters. The butterflies will have a feast too. I am not certain what kind of caterpillar you have here, but I am sure it is not a monarch unless it is a southern variety. ?? Great looking fellow though! Happy Autumn! ;>)

    • roundrockgarden said:

      Ohhh, how right you are! After a little research, I’ve determined that it is, in fact, a queen caterpillar. I wondered why it had six horns instead of four. They look pretty similar, though! That’s my story and I’m sticking to it! 😛

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