Do you collect milkweed pods? There always is a big question about what to store them in. Since the pods are prone to molding, whatever you store them in needs to be breathable — something to allow maximum circulation. Monarch Watch suggests onion bags. What? Where does one get onion bags?
The pre-packaged onions at the grocery store typically come in a small mesh 3# size bag. They could easily be repurposed to serve as storage for milkweed pods.
Or, if you’re looking for larger sizes, you might ask the produce manager at the local grocery store or perhaps a restaurant manager to keep some for you. Their bulk supply of onions likely comes in 50# size bags. Beats putting the bags in the landfill!
Be sure to remove the label from the onion sack since that will block the air circulation.
Some of the net laundry bags might also work, if you can find some with a looser weave.
As you have read in my past years’ posts, Monarch Watch accepts donations of milkweed seed which they send to their contractor nurseries. The plugs grown from the seed are either sold to the general public or used toward their restoration efforts.
Monarch Watch currently has plenty of seed for the Midwest, but still needs Asclepias incarnata (Red or Swamp Milkweed) and Asclepias tuberosa (Butterflyweed) seed for the eastern US. If you plan to donate seed, please see their seed donation guide.
Removing the Seed from the Pods
Monarch Watch prefers you send at least 2 ounces or more of milkweed seed, but they will also accept dry pods. Regardless if you send the seed to Monarch Watch or clean it for your own use, here’s a fairly easy way to separate the seed from the floss.
Thank you Candy Sarikonda for producing such a helpful video.