All You Can - Where You Can
Increase and improve pollinator conservation for all Ohioans.
Annual Milkweed Pod Collection
It’s that time again!
The Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative is calling on all Ohioans for another year of Milkweed pod collections! This project started in 2015 as a 7 county pilot and since that time hundreds of Ohioans have worked together collecting thousands of pods across the state. Volunteers have collected approximately 5000 gallons of common milkweed seed pods, totaling over 22 million seeds! Milkweed is the only host plant for the Monarch butterfly for egg laying and caterpillar rearing. It also serves as a food source for Monarchs as well as many other pollinator species. The disappearance of milkweed across the U.S. has contributed to the 80% decline of the eastern monarch butterfly population over the last 20 years. We are working hard in Ohio to change this, and you can help! Let’s make our collection efforts even better by following these simple tips!
• Make sure that before you collect seed, you become familiar with the common milkweed to avoid harvesting pods from similar plants such as hemp dogbane and swamp milkweed.
• It is best to collect the pods when they are dry, grey, or brown. IT IS IMPORTANT TO CHECK THIS! (Since pod collection starts Sept 1 and runs through Oct 31… please use September as the time to locate milkweed plants and to keep an eye on the pods while they ripen and then pick them once they look like the picture shown below.)
• If the center seam pops with gentle pressure, they can be harvested.
• Store the pods in paper bags; plastic bags collect unwanted moisture.
• Put the date and county collected on the bag when you turn them in.
• Keep the pods in a cool, dry area until you can deliver them to the nearest collection site.
• You can find the nearest collection site at https://www.agri.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/oda/divisions/soil-and-water-conservation/find-a-local-swcd/swcd-list
These are the districts that are participating with the OPHI Pod collection this year:
Adams, Ashland, Athens, Auglaize, Belmont, Brown, Butler, Carroll, Clark, Clermont, Clinton, Columbiana, Cuyahoga, Darke, Delaware, Fairfield, Fayette, Franklin, Fulton, Greene, Hamilton, Hancock, Harrison, Henry, Hocking, Holmes, Huron, Jefferson, Knox, Lake, Logan, Lorain, Lucas, Madison, Mahoning, Medina, Meigs, Mercer, Miami, Monroe, Montgomery, Muskingum, Noble, Ottawa, Paulding, Pickaway, Pike, Preble, Putnam, Richland, Ross, Sandusky, Shelby, Stark, Summit, Trumbull, Union, Van Wert, Warren, Washington, Wayne, Williams, Wood, Wyandot
Collections start September 1st and goes until October 30th (we will accept pods until November 1st)
If you have questions regarding milkweed collection, please contact Marci Lininger at Marci.Lininger@dot.ohio.gov or Lori Stevenson at Lori_Stevenson@fws.gov.
For more information on best practices for collecting milkweed please refer to this video! http://u.osu.edu/beelab/milkweed-seed/
We thank you for your help!
August 31- OPHI Symposium at the Rhodes Building of the Ohio Expo Center
PowerPoint Presentations from the recent conference:
Thank you to our Monarch level sponsors!!!
Also, thanks to our Friends of OPHI sponsors!!!
Create and improve pollinator habitat across the State of Ohio.
Jackson County SWCD