Wild Ones for Monarchs




Ilse Gebhard, KAWO Monarch Committee

Karen Meabord has been working very hard to have the Monarch designated as the State of Michigan’s official insect.  A bill is being drafted in the House.  In order to get this passed, we need to get as many people as possible to show they are in favor of it.

The first thing you can do to help is sign a petition to gather support for this: Say Yes Michigan to the Monarch as our Official  State Insect!  Please share the link with your Michigan friends.

Second, this summer there will be a rally at the State Capital on Tuesday, August 9, as 2 p.m.  Please attend.

And last but not least, there is a public Facebook page for the rally that anyone can view, and if you have a Facebook account, you can click “going”: Say Yes to Michigan!   Even if you can’t make it, please click “going'” as it will show Michigan lawmakers that you support the Monarch butterfly as our state insect.  Please invite your Michigan friends to view and click as well, and share on your Facebook page.





The Kalamazoo Gazette published an article and video about Wild Ones’ partnership with Monarch Joint Venture and Bring Back the Monarchs of Monarch Watch. Enjoy the (mostly accurate) interview with Ilse Gebhard, one of KAWO’s founding members and a real Monarch expert.


Here’s a wonderful article published in Second Wave/Southwest Michigan on October 27, 2016, again featuring KAWO’s own Ilse Gebhard:

Winging it: Of Butterflies, beer (mostly butterflies), and travels with the Butterfly Lady

An article was published by MLive and the Grand Rapids Press in June of 2016, with comments from Ilse Gebhard, KAWO Monarch Committee:

Michigan conservationists aim to lift monarch populations


Members of KAWO marched in the Do Dah Parade on June 4, 2016.  Ilse Gebhard reports that 700 milkweed seed packets were handed out, along with 600 monarch bookmarks.  It seems parade watchers actually chased KAWO down for seeds!  Well done, folks.

Do Dah 16 banner 2Do Dah 16 Ilse         Do Dah 16Do Dah 16 monarch hatdo dah ilse buggyDo Dah banner 1



Make a financial donation to support purchase of plug trays, growing media, or plants. Any amount welcome! Write checks to Kalamazoo Area Wild Ones (KAWO) with a notation for               Monarch Committee in the memo line;

Grow milkweed plants to share with family and friends and to give away at events like plant exchanges. Seeds and instructions available at monthly meetings, or contact Ilse Gebhard                 (gebhard.ilse@gmail.com);

Join the Monarch Committee or express an interest in being contacted for tasks; please let Ilse Gebhard know. Sometime this winter we’ll need help transplanting seedlings from seed flats to plug flats (an excellent opportunity to see how native plants are grown in a greenhouse setting);

Plant milkweed in your yard and register it as a Monarch Watch Waystation—if you haven’t, this would be a great time. Seeds and information available at meetings, or go to                               www.monarchwatch.org;

Motivate non-members to plant milkweed on their properties, or share how-to ideas. Ilse Gebhard has a PowerPoint presentation – if you belong to any group looking for programs, please let Ilse know.