State park’s Butterfly Garden sees butterfly migration

Mid-June is the best time to visit the Butterfly Garden on the southeast side of the lake at Crawford State Park, north of Girard, Kansas.

“It’s almost impossible to capture all the beauty and activity going on there,” said Katharine Spigarelli of Friends of Crawford State Park.”

During a recent trip, Spigarelli counted at least 5 different species of butterflies, including Great Spangled Frittilaries, Sulphers and Monarchs.

“I am pretty sure that there will be a Monarch nursery there in the next couple of weeks,” Spigarelli said.

Traveling 50-100 miles a day, it takes butterflies two months to make the annual journey south to Mexico. Mid-June is their peak travel time through Southeast Kansas. Monarch butterflies overwinter in Mexico, and are the only butterfly known to migrate back north during the Fall.

“Across the road from the Butterfly Garden is a beautiful patch of Pale Purple Coneflowers and the butterflies were all over it as well and, blended in with the coneflowers were several patches of Butterfly Milkweed and some Missouri Evening Primrose,” Spigarelli said of her recent visit. “All these are native plants growing naturally here at our best kept secret.  I hope you’ll have a chance to get out and enjoy them.  It’s a real treat!”