The Butterfly Dreams Begin - Part 1

The Butterfly Dreams Begin - Part 1

Eye-to-eye with butterflies

From my earliest memories, I've been captivated by butterflies. Picture a little me, small enough to stand amidst my father's zinnia patch, patiently awaiting the flutter of delicate wings. As I grew taller than the zinnias, my fascination with butterflies only intensified.

Around 2010, I made a sobering realization—I hadn't spotted a monarch butterfly in ages. Summer after summer, my hopes dwindled to zero sightings. The shocking truth hit me: over 90% of our eastern monarch butterfly population had vanished. The eco-conscious side of me, which had always existed but was never in the spotlight, suddenly took center stage.


A new home and a new dream

Fast forward to six years ago (2017), when we bought a new home bordering a vast field, mowed only occasionally for grass fodder. Gazing at the field, I daydreamed of a butterfly haven. I envisioned an open meadow with winding paths and shaded swings inviting passersby to pause and immerse themselves in nature's beauty.  But the occasional cabbage butterflies and little sulfurs were not enough to satisfy my soul.  Where were the monarchs?!?!  I delved into research, exploring how crucial native wildflowers are to butterfly survival, the intricacies of seed germination through cold stratification, and the vital role native plants play in ecosystems.

Four years ago (2019), the dream of Mariposa Meadow—a 6-acre native wildflower park—began to blossom when we were given the opportunity to purchase the very field I had been daydreaming about. The owner, upon hearing my vision for a wildflower meadow and pollinator conservation, embraced the idea with enthusiasm.

 Panoramic view of meadow and walnut trees at sunset.

(Near) death of a dream

Then, almost three years ago, in February 2021, disaster struck our family, and the dream seemed to wither away. My husband became critically ill and nearly died.  Our lives were radically altered as we incorporated the changes that would sustain his life.  However, setbacks are often the prelude to comebacks.  Stay tuned for the revival of Mariposa Meadow and the continuation of a dream that refuses to be extinguished.

Shattered mirror reflecting a hand reaching out to touch it

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