Learn how milkweed helps pollinators at Oct. 2 MDC virtual program

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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. – Many people would argue that if there ever was a plant that didn’t deserve to have “weed” as part of its name, it’s milkweed.

People wanting to learn more about milkweed and the connections this plant has with butterflies and other insects should sign up for the Missouri Department of Conservation’s (MDC) free virtual program “Milkweed: Host Plant Extraordinaire.” This online program will be from 10-11 a.m. on Oct. 2 and is being put on by the staff of MDC’s Cape Girardeau Conservation Nature Center. This program is designed for people ages 12 and up. People can register for this program at:


Milkweed” is actually something of an umbrella term for a number of plants in the Asclepias genus. There are a number of species of milkweed – 16 are native to Missouri. Milkweed is known for its connection with monarch butterflies (monarch caterpillars feed on the plant’s leaves and adult monarchs get nectar from the plants), but a number of other insects are attracted to this plant, too. Cape Girardeau Assistant Nature Center Manager Jamie Koehler will discuss some of the other insects that can be found on a milkweed plant and why this plant is so remarkable.

Though this program is free, registration is required to participate using the link above. Registrants must provide an e-mail, so a program link can be sent to them. This program will include a chat-based question-and-answer period where participants can interact with the presenters.

Staff at MDC facilities across the state are holding virtual programs. A listing of these programs can be found at mdc.mo.gov/regions.