Posted by: Sandy Steinman | October 23, 2021

Tropical Milkweed—a No-Grow

The Xerces Society reports

Tropical milkweed becomes a problem when planted in temperate areas where it does not die back in winter. A protozoan parasite of monarch butterflies, Ophryocystis elektroscirrha or OE for short, can travel with monarchs visiting the plants and become deposited on leaves. When caterpillars hatch and start eating the plant, they ingest the OE. High OE levels in adult monarchs have been linked to lower migration success in the eastern monarch population, as well as reductions in body mass, lifespan, mating success, and flight ability.

Read more at  Tropical Milkweed—a No-Grow | Xerces Society


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