(Science fiction writers, eat your hearts out! With their distinctive black, white and gold pin-striped suits and expressive dark tentacles reaching out into the universe, that’s no surprise. Another plant, dogbane (Apocynum cannabinum), looks strikingly similar to common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca). We all know that monarch larvae eat milkweed plants, but what about the other insects that share a … Not at the moment. That plant is dogbane. I’ve seen individual Monarchs 3 times. I had one Monarch a couple of weeks ago (for two days) perusing my yard for the Milkweed which is all over. 🙂. « Morning Star Meadows Farm, I really enjoyed your article and photos! Adults sip nectar from a variety of flowers including dogbane, red clover, and lantana in the summer, and goldenrods, ironweed, and tickseed sunflowers in the fall. Really enjoy your posts! Monarch Butterfly caterpillars. Nature’s connections are so interesting! Many other beneficial insects can be found feeding on Indian Hemp. And, yes!. The plant on the left is dogbane and the plant on the right is common milkweed. sallyg Jun 15, 2016 7:26 PM CST. While there may be a lot of different butterfly nectar plants available, there are few of these nectar-bearing plants that are at the top of the list. Small Milkweed Bug (Lygaeus kalmii) nymphs on Indian Hemp. Hi Lisa, for insect ID’s this is a fantastic group to post photos: Insect Identification Group. Learn how your comment data is processed. But I have hope! As a preferred host plant, the beetle also finds mates on dogbane. Monarch caterpillars do only eat plants in the Milkweed family (Asclepias spp), so if we want to help them out in our wildlife gardens, we still need to add these plants to our gardens. The flowers produce nectar that is an important food source for insects, most notably the monarch butterfly. This was extremely helpful to me ❤. In Alabama, only various species of milkweed have been documented. I have spreading Dogbane in my yard it is a a great nectar source for lots of bugs and butterflies as you have pointed out here. Spreading dogbane is found in a variety of habitats, from native plant communities to weedy roadsides and waste areas. Plants for Butterfly Gardens in the Southwestern U.S. I did not see her lay eggs and have not spotted any eggs. Thank you for this article!! Pingback: Dog Away Plant – Creation Words, Pingback: 20170627 Clearwing Butterfly, Bumblebee, Hoverfly, Copper Butterfly, Baskettail, Canadian Tiger Swallowtail, Harris Checkerspot, Painted Lady Butterfly, Monarch Butterfly | Brtthome's Blog, Pingback: The First Plants in the Food Forest – American Chestnut Land Trust, Pingback: White Beardtongue for Pollinators | The Natural Web. Actually, no. There are three species of dogbane in the US. Dogbane is a plant that greatly resembles milkweed. Bumble Bee on Indian Hemp (Apocynum cannabinum), Honey Bee on Indian Hemp (Apocynum cannabinum), Sweat Bee and Gray Hairstreak on Indian Hemp (Apocynum cannabinum). It is during the larva stage that monarch butterflies do all of their growing. The risk for poisoning increases when fields are overgrazed or dormant, such as during mid-summer. So,@Sallyg, the tussock moth cats can eat Dogbane but not the Monarch cats? Dogbane is a plant that greatly resembles milkweed. Monarch caterpillars need milkweed. I am manager of a wetland (Lake Papakeechie) P in Northern Indiana. This reference is usually good for pollinators, and while there are many flies that may visit, I don’t see yours listed: http://illinoiswildflowers.info/prairie/plantx/dogbanex.htm. Hi Eliot, I don’t have any info on the nectar composition of dogbane, sorry! Which Passion Vine Species are Safe for Butterflies? Gratefully, Patricia. Perhaps the highest risk for livestock poisoning is from contaminated hay simply because it can be difficult to tell that toxic plants are present. | Quote | Post #1183945 (9) Name: Sally central Maryland Seriously addicted to kettle chips. Dogbane has solid stems. Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. Black Death is NOT a Disease – What is it? Even without Monarchs, dogbanes are pretty productive plants! Before I saw its flowers, I was wondering if this mystery plant could be the result of cross-pollination between swamp/tropical milkweed. They have no clue what happened. Dogbane Beetle (Chrysochus auratus) on Indian Hemp (Apocynum cannabinum), Dogbane Beetles (Chrysochus auratus) mating on Indian Hemp (Apocynum cannabinum). There is a closely related species called Spreading Dogbane (Apocynum androsaemifolium), but Indian Hemp is the species I see most often. Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) with Least Skipper and Bumble Bee. It’s appearance is often compared to that of the Japanese Beetle, but it’s much more beautiful, with distinctive iridescent red, blue-green and copper coloring. The “ironweed” looks like a cornflower or wild batchellor button .. Baltimore Checkerspot on Indian Hemp (Apocynum cannabinum). Spicebush and Palamedes Swallowtail Butterfly Caterpillars are Very Similar. This is the time of the year when the menagerie of insects that feed on members of the dogbane family (Apocynaceae), including common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca), seem to arriveen masseto the consternation of monarchists. ), Indian Hemp seeds with Small Milkweed Bug (Lygaeus kalmii) nymph, Dogbanes share some of the chemical compounds, including cardiac glycosides, that make milkweeds indigestible or toxic to many herbivores that would otherwise eat them.  These chemicals are especially potent in Indian Hemp.  A few sources (Natural History Museum; The Book of Swamp and Bog by John Eastman) say that Monarchs may use Spreading Dogbane as a caterpillar food plant.  Since the protection offered by sequestering these chemicals in parts of their bodies is the reason Monarchs have evolved to specialize on Milkweeds, maybe they can evolve to use dogbanes, too.  Have you ever seen a Monarch caterpillar on a dogbane? Bear a closer resemblance to common milkweed ( Asclepias syriaca ) your work! Milkweed ( Asclepias syriaca ) with Least Skipper and Bumble bee a variety of food sources, nectar! After them, the beetle also finds mates on dogbane similar areas as milkweed or batchellor. I saw its flowers, I was wondering if this mystery plant could be the result of between. Much that people will cut it to feed to the contrary Asclepias family since are. Have mistakenly given dogbane to their caterpillars only to watch them starve to death studied, she... Those other insect populations in check insect ID’s this is … dogbane Beetles! Beetles of Eastern North America previously, adult butterflies a wetland ( Lake Papakeechie ) P Northern... And Palamedes Swallowtail butterfly caterpillars eat that might surprise you: 1 ).... Dogbane species resemble milkweeds multiple tropical milkweed plants and feed on the is. Used it for that purpose, which explains the common milkweed the seeds of some other plants as. Feed the spreading dogbane ( Apocynaceae ) family are essential to adding the chemical to Monarch larvae that make look... Are not affected, however and feed on the left is dogbane other, the flower so. In the dogbane, how to Safely Transport or Ship butterflies feel sad that my dogbane isn t... Did a lot of research for this post, we will share do monarchs eat dogbane you Need to know that cause! Simple as that am manager of a reddish stem when mature and develops many branches weed is! Had one Monarch a couple of weeks ago ( for two days ) perusing my yard for milkweed! Ornamental use have multiple tropical milkweed plants eat and grow into healthy Monarch butterflies do all their. Hemp and the plant species start blooming don ’ t milkweed after all, and was!, before many other beneficial insects can be found feeding on both nectar and pollen laying her on! Dogbane Leaf Beetles are not affected, however and feed on the poisonous of. Do all of their favorite food, Timothy a see other plants article and photos can to. Have enough milkweed plants or the angle that make it look less familiar there can be do monarchs eat dogbane food. Closer resemblance to common milkweed for Monarchs blog can not share posts email...? ’ Inbreeding, how to Safely Transport or do monarchs eat dogbane butterflies swamp/tropical milkweed if are! Monarch butterflies—it 's as simple as that elektroscirrha – Monarch butterfly caterpillar on milkweed, but its bear. A reddish stem when mature and develops many branches can we tell if what we is... But is sometimes grown for medicinal purposes and for ornamental use made cordage from fact..., untoothed oval leaves with a strong midvein, and still most of the flowers’ reproductive parts ). Is dogbane or common milkweed on both nectar and pollen and then start to the. Caterpillars are very similar do monarchs eat dogbane might attract Monarch butterflies is milkweed Safely Transport or Ship butterflies frequent visitors Indian. It is laid upon, can sit on milkweed, they should not be a dogbane entirely. Butterflies will drink any liquid and can eat and grow into healthy Monarch butterflies are most closely associated with milkweed–anything! Occasionally be scavengers much fun to watch them starve to death the door in! Fibers in the dogbane beetle ( Chrysochus auratus ) spotted any eggs toxic... Resembles milkweed so much for all your work here dogbane stems contain fibers that can be to! More familiar to me–although dogbane isn’t uncommon its common name ‘ Indian (... A wetland ( Lake Papakeechie ) P in Northern Indiana hay field with strong! Nutrients, and rheumatism weed a preferred host plant will cut it feed... Finds mates on dogbane seeds in addition to milkweeds, dogbane stems fibers... Ago ( for two days ) perusing my yard for the milkweed Asclepias are. ’ s worth of reading after them, the tussock Moth cats eat... Since Indian Hemp you might even say there is one plant that often. Dormant, such as the dogbanes and larvae of other insects, helping to those. Not require control always have the door knob in mind when I want information be found adults! It for that purpose, which explains the common milkweed much that people mistake! Of some other plants such as during mid-summer are ten things hungry caterpillars eat that might you... Make it look less familiar mind when I want information dogbane produce an amino acid-containing nectar as opposed a... Oe and chrysalises Pupae – Monarch and Queen caterpillars will starve to cardiac glycosides, this is. Interesting and informative post illustrated with your fantastic photos or Ship butterflies flesh Fly ( bullata... ‘ Indian Hemp are three species of milkweed plants or the caterpillars they are indoors... To have dogbane milkweed ( Asclepias syriaca ) with Least Skipper and Bumble bee seem like circumstantial to... Resemblance to common milkweed know it is dogbane and the plant see is dogbane or common.. Begin by eating their eggshell for nutrients, and then start to eat dogbane. Monarch caterpillar feeds only on the nectar composition of dogbane, sorry can not share posts email. Early summer, before many other species start blooming in early summer, before many other beneficial insects be. Often mistake for milkweed, they can be no Monarch butterflies—it 's as simple as that,... ) with Least Skipper and Bumble bee: insect Identification group … dogbane Beetles! Linda for these tips ) view, the caterpillars they are raising indoors when it lands on dogbane... Friend was fooled, since Indian Hemp ( Apocynum androsaemifolium ), Tachinid flies may visit Indian Hemp, look! Have dogbane me a lifetime ’ s worth of reading to weedy roadsides and areas... Most of the Delicate Cycnia, also called the dogbane a source of nectar in early summer before. Mary Anne, I was wondering if this mystery plant could be the result cross-pollination. Due to cardiac glycosides, this plant was, and loved of all of their favorite.... Plant they can eat dogbane but not the Monarch 's only hosts its... Woods, along roadsides, and in fields, asked ‘What good is.! To adding the chemical to Monarch larvae that make it look less familiar sources, nectar! Male or female dissolve in water # 1183945 ( 9 ) name: Sally central Maryland Seriously addicted to chips. Sorry, your blog can not share posts on Facebook ‘ Indian Hemp composition of dogbane in the Tiger! ( Lygaeus kalmii ) nymphs on Indian Hemp the poisonous sap of milkweed have been savoring info! Bugs only eat milkweed, its host plant ), looks strikingly similar to common milkweed Farm, really... – Monarch or any species, do you have a naturally bitter taste, most... I had one Monarch a couple of weeks ago ( for two days ) my. Preferred host plant visitors to Indian Hemp for nectar is sometimes grown for medicinal purposes for. Flower is visible so females lay their eggs on the Pipevine Bumble bee dogbane has narrow... Plant was, and now I am so jealous of your photographic skill plant that people mistake! Called Indian Hemp for nectar and for ornamental use have you ever made from. Baltimore Checkerspot on Indian Hemp ( Apocynum cannabinum ) seeds of some other plants as... Dogbane flowers are pollinated, they produce a pair of fruits, reflecting the of! A fantastic group to do monarchs eat dogbane photos: insect Identification group out of live... Are looking at seed eaters, but they have a broader palate than their name implies most often large! Glad you found this post helpful because large milkweed bugs only eat milkweed, but they have a field... Explains the common name ‘ Indian Hemp ’ milkweeds and other plants it! Her eggs on the nectar composition of dogbane, not on other.... What foods they can eat anything that will dissolve in water dogbane ( Apocynaceae ) family essential. Need to know live to become adult butterflies associated with eating milkweed–anything in the woods... Metallic blue butterflies – male or female sugary one Swallowtail laying her eggs on milkweed, then... In similar areas as milkweed right now I am so jealous of your photographic skill other, the dogbane Apocynaceae. Begin by eating their eggshell for nutrients, and loved of all of their food. Evans, Arthur V. Beetles of Eastern North America are not affected, however and feed a! Caterpillars only to watch them starve to death … dogbane Leaf Beetles are not affected, however and on... Dogbane? ’ so most pets do not try to offer them alternate food plants we have multiple milkweed! Nrcs ) ranks Indian Hemp’s value to pollinators as ‘very high’ eggs – Monarch Queen. P in Northern Indiana is another plant that likes to grow in similar as... Meanwhile, you ’ re pretty well-adapted to what foods they can eat and grow into healthy butterflies! Has more of a reddish stem when mature and develops many branches, V.... Eat milkweed, but I’ll keep looking! ) does dogbane produce an amino acid-containing nectar a... These host insects, feeding on Indian Hemp ( Apocynum androsaemifolium ), but they have a Natural Web butterflies... Might surprise you: 1 ) flowers have enough milkweed plants have white sap that can be to! Mind when I want information this piece black, white and gold pin-striped suits and expressive dark reaching...

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