Town making home for monarchs

Published 10:37 am Monday, February 20, 2017

by Brenda Peters

A pollinator garden is being established in front of the Windsor Library as part of the Mayor’s Monarch Pledge program. The program encourages mayors and their community to take action to help save the declining monarch butterfly and its habitat.

This past Saturday, volunteers from the Historic Southside Chapter of the Virginia Master Naturalist removed the grass to begin preparing the site. When completed, the garden will include native plants and shrubs that will benefit not only the monarch, but other native pollinators. It will also include fencing, a walkway, a display board, and a bench so citizens can observe and enjoy the wonders of the garden.

A dedication ceremony is planned for March 11 at 10 am. Mayor Cartia Richardson will talk about the pledge and a proclamation declaring March 2017 as “Monarch Butterfly Month,” She will plant the first shrub with the help of Master Naturalist volunteers. Winners of the Windsor Elementary “Think Spring” Art Show that will be held on Thursday, March 9 from 5 to 6:30 p.m., will be awarded.

If you are interested in starting your own pollinator garden, the library will be hosting a series of monthly presentations by Master Naturalist volunteers beginning next week.

On Thursday, Feb. 23, from 6 to 7 p.m., the first presentation will be “Planning a Pollinator Garden” with discussions on site selection and preparation, soil testing and amendments, mulch and plant selection.

In March, “The Monarch Butterfly” will be the topic with information about the species, why it is in decline, and what you can do to help. “Native Plants for Pollinators” will be discussed in April with an emphasis on why use native plants, plant selection and resources.

The subject of discussion in May will be “Invasive Plants,” how to identify them and how to remove them.

Finally, in June, Isle of Wight Extension Agent Janet Spencer, will speak about “Native Pollinators in Your Garden.”

If you would like to attend this month’s presentation, registration is recommended by calling the library at 242-3046. If you would like more information on the pledge, upcoming events, and the monarch butterfly, visit the Town’s Mayors’ Monarch Pledge webpage at