Caterpillar Inspired?

Screen Shot 2018-09-16 at 6.38.31 AMI have a theory.

A Monarch caterpillar climbed up the cosmos and spotted the drawing of a chrysalis on the sign made by the students at the Waldorf School for the butterfly garden at Pitney Meadows Community Gardens.

Inspired, he thought, “I can do that.” And transformed from caterpillar to pupa right next to the sign. What do you think?

This is our fourth Monarch chrysalis in the garden’s certified Monarch way station which is brimming with flowers planted to support the lifecycle of the Monarch butterfly.

Our First Monarch Emerged

Screen Shot 2018-09-07 at 1.39.24 PMWe were lucky enough to spot two Monarch butterfly caterpillars in our butterfly garden last month.

There may have been more, but we knew of two.

We nurtured them along. kept them safe and once they formed chrysalises we moved them into a netted butterfly house to watch them mature.

Yesterday, one emerged as the gorgeous butterfly you see here.  The other should follow any day now.

As many of you know, the Pitney Meadows Community Gardens became a certified Monarch Waystation last winter.  This means we provide the plants and habitat Monarch butterflies need to complete their lifecycle from egg to butterfly.

Looks like we did well.

Thank you to Judy. our butterfly foster mother who cared for them.

Waldorf Students Illustrate Monarch Butterfly Signs for Pitney Meadows

waldorfsigninstallStudents from the Waldorf School in Saratoga Springs illustrated signs for the Pitney Meadows Community Gardens Monarch Waystation.

The five signs each depict an interesting fact about the butterflies that migrate thousands of miles and who have been in decline due to destruction of their habitat and the use of pesticides.

Pictured here are Michael Whitney, the practical arts teacher who built the cedar sign posts, and Elizabeth Straton, Community Relations.

The sign next to them shows the difference between a male and female butterfly. You didn’t know there was a way to tell a boy from a girl?

Come to the gardens, read the signs and maybe see some butterflies.  The butterfly bed surrounding them contains plants that support the butterfly from egg to caterpillar to adult with an abundant supply of nectar rich flowers that bloom through the season. The garden also contains milkweed, the only plant the monarch caterpillar eats.

Thank you to the students who drew the illustrations. They are beautiful.

Natalie Walsh, Garden Director

 

 

 

Deer Fencing Installation Next Week

Screen Shot 2018-07-27 at 8.50.26 AMDeer have been making their way near our gardens. To combat this, we will be installing an electric fence next week.

The fence will be on a timer and electrified overnight, from dusk to dawn when they are most active.  This shouldn’t interfere with any gardening activities as the fence will be ON when the gardens are closed.

We could use a hand with the installation and need volunteers for next Thursday morning starting at 9:30.  Let me know if you can help ASAP. We need about 4 people.

Thank you to the gardeners who reported tracks and sent images.  It is a big help to have many eyes looking out for the gardens. We are a good team.

CHORES

The gardens are well-watered and in good shape but there are chores that need to be done.

On Saturday morning from 8 to 11, I will be in the gardens and able to show people the tasks that need doing that will earn volunteer hours.

Please come if you can, especially if you need hours to fulfill your commitment.

NOTES

Mark your calendar for the fairy gathering on September 22. It is also the day of the sunflower measuring for our sunflower contest.

We will have a food truck present and could use volunteers to help plan activities for a fun day.

I’m thinking, a “Make your own Fairy Wand” booth, field games, music.  I’m open to all suggestions.

For example, We have a gardener who volunteered to lead a fairy dance with the children.  And another who has written a song about the gardens.

Children will have dozens of fairy houses they made on display in the North flower border.

Let me know how you would like to participate and add to the magic of the day.

Monarchs

Our butterfly garden and certified way station has been hosting lots of Monarch butterflies.  Next week, five signs illustrated by talented students from the Waldorf School of Saratoga Springs will be installed.  They are wonderful! And informative!

Thank you all for sharing your talents and your time.

Natalie