Native plants and migrating butterflys

Josh Harville jharville@empiretribune.com

The Prairie Rose Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Texas is hosting a native plant sale followed by a Monarch butterfly presentation on Tuesday, Sept. 1.

The native plant sale begins at 4 p.m. and lasts to 5:30 p.m. and will be held on the patio of the Storiebook Cafe. The plants available for purchase are known as butterfly weeds - or milkweeds - and will be in four-inch pots for $2 each.

The Monarch butterfly presentation will begin at 6:30 p.m., and will be held at the Somervell County Citizens Center. Special speaker Armand Hufault, a Texas Native Plantsman, will educate the public on the complexity and wonder of the migration of the monarch butterflies, and how people can help the butterflies during their migration.

"[Hufault] was instrumental in starting three of the major native plant chapters in Texas," said Karen Richardson, president of the Prairie Rose Chapter. "He's been involved from the beginning."

Educational opportunities are in abundance at the dual location event.

"People can learn to identify the native milkweed, which is [the Monarch's] native food source. You can have your pastures and your mildewed too, it's just knowing when to mow and when to take care of it," Richardson said.

The Native Plant Society of Texas has around 30 chapters scattered regionally throughout the state, according to Richardson. The Prairie Rose Chapter encompasses affiliates from Hamilton, Bosque, Hood, Johnson, Erath, and even guests from Parker County.

"We cover about five to six counties in the area," Richardson said.

The Prairie Rose Chapter also has a garden on the Glen Rose square that is open to the public.

"People can check out our community plant garden, we call it our community learning garden," Richardson said. "It is on Brannan St. next to the Somervell County Museum."

The event is free to the public and patrons are encouraged to come enjoy the native plants and learn about the Monarch butterfly.