Participants in the Milkweed planting included (l-r): Susan Garrison and grandchildren Vera and Valon Mayer; Nick Zagacki with daughters Grace and Jill; Mikael Nordstrom; Larry Smoose; and Irene, Ian, Sun and Ryan Kim.

The Rotary Club of Media recently sponsored a seed-planting workshop to start milkweed seedlings at the Media-Upper Providence Free Library. The project is part of an effort to save the endangered Monarch butterfly which only lays it eggs on milkweed pods.

While milkweed used to be common in many fields and meadows, development and loss of habitat has greatly decreased the amount of milkweed in the tri-state area and other key fly-ways, contributing to the designation of the Monarch as an endangered species. Rotary International has been encouraging clubs to start pollinator gardens and the Rotary Club of Media responded by partnering with the Jaisohn Memorial House in Media to start a pollinator garden, including milkweed in its plantings.

Mikael Nordstrom, the clubs Community Service Chair and Mina Yi-Merisalde, a club member who is also on the board of the Jaisohn Memorial House worked together to initiated the project. The first part of the plan was to plant the seeds and ask participants to take them home and nurture them into seedlings that will then be planted at the Jaisohn Memorial House in late May. Rotarian Nick Zagacki purchased the seeds and brought potting soil and small peat pots in which to place the seeds, teaching those present how to plant them and care for them over the next eight weeks.

Ryan, Ian, Sun and Irene Kim planting milkweed seeds

Susan Garrison with grandchildren Vera and Valon Mayer plant milkweed seeds