Recent Articles

The Farmland Decline of Monarch Butterflies and Bees: What Do Our Food Choices Have to Do With It?

April 5, 2014By
The Farmland Decline of Monarch Butterflies and Bees: What Do Our Food Choices Have to Do With It?

On your way to being seated at Oyamel in Washington D.C., you pass stunning mobiles of orange and black monarchs, the now-imperiled butterfly that winters in the sacred oyamel fir forests of Central Mexico.

But once you look at the menu, you read that Chef Jose Andrés is donating one dollar for each Taco de Puerco Estilo Apatzingan to the preservation of monarch…

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Spring Has Sprung: The Sixth-Annual White House Garden Planting

April 5, 2014By
Spring Has Sprung: The Sixth-Annual White House Garden Planting

Yesterday, the First Lady welcomed local students and FoodCorps leaders on the South Lawn for the sixth-annual planting of the White House Kitchen Garden.

The garden was first planted in 2009 to commence a nationwide conversation on healthy eating and inspired the First Lady to launch Let’s Move!

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When You Plant Flowers This Spring, Think Pollinator Forages, Phenologies and Partnerships

April 2, 2014By
When You Plant Flowers This Spring, Think Pollinator Forages, Phenologies and Partnerships

More than ever before, Americans are looking at their planting of flowers on their land in their gardens in a broader context, one that includes colors and fragrance, but extends beyond our own perception of those attractions to how pollinators themselves perceive them.

The reason for this paradigm shift is obvious to anyone who has been reading the news…

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Homero Aridjis on the Genesis of the Monarch Letter

March 31, 2014By
Homero Aridjis on the Genesis of the Monarch Letter

When news of the drastic drop in monarch numbers overwintering in Mexico this season broke on January 29th, I was quoted by Associated Press as saying “I think President Obama should take some step to support the survival of the Monarch butterflies.

The governments of the United States and Canada have washed their hands of the problem, and left it all to Mexico.”

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Acknowledging the Blessings on the Pollen Path

March 29, 2014By
Acknowledging the Blessings on the Pollen Path

Recently Dr. Gary Paul Nabhan and I attended several meetings in Washington D. C. as part of a February leadership initiative for “Make Way for Monarchs – A Milkweed-Butterfly Recovery Alliance.”

Immediately prior to journeying north from Asheville, and about the same time the monarchs in Mexico were about to journey north…

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Citizen scientists can help monarch butterflies

March 28, 2014By
Citizen scientists can help monarch butterflies

From the age of five, Fred Urquhart was fascinated by monarch butterflies in his Toronto neighbourhood. Born in 1911, he spent hours watching the orange and black insects flutter about, wondering: Where did they go in winter?

At school, he read voraciously about nature, especially monarchs and other insects.

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Your Call: What can we do to save the monarch?

March 26, 2014By
Your Call: What can we do to save the monarch?

On today’s Your Call, we’ll talk about the plight of the monarch butterfly. Every year, monarchs migrate thousands of miles from Canada to Mexico, but their numbers are rapidly dwindling.

Habitat destruction from logging in Mexico and the elimination of milkweed in the US have brought this species to a tipping point.

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A Prayer for Monarch Butterflies

March 15, 2014By
A Prayer for Monarch Butterflies

In an article in The New York Times, Lincoln Brower and Homero Aridjis note the winter monarch colonies near Mexico City have shrunk considerably.

Between 1993 and 2003, they covered an average of 22 acres; this year’s area hit a record low of 2.3 acres. Like the loss of bees, the decline of the…

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