Ward Butterfly Garden
After becoming concerned about the rapidly decreasing monarch butterfly population, Pioneers in Abilene, Texas devised a project to help. They tackled the problem by building a butterfly garden at Allie Ward Elementary school in Abilene that would also educate local schoolchildren.
The garden was designed as a habitat that would allow monarch butterflies to grow and reproduce–eventually creating a larger community of the butterflies. Many flowers and milkweeds were planted to create a space that resembles the butterflies’ natural habitat. Pioneers also took care to choose a spot for the garden where children do not play, so that the butterflies’ fragile habitat would not be disturbed.
Schoolchildren were involved in planting the garden, and the finished garden now serves as a place for the children to learn about the life cycle of monarch butterflies.
Pioneers distributed educational materials to all first grade students about the life cycle of the butterfly, and each elementary student was allowed to visit the garden. Pioneers chose to disseminate information about the problem with school age children in the hopes that they would share it with their families and learn ways to better protect the species.
Through this project, Pioneers created a beautiful habitat for monarch butterflies, and they were also able to teach local children about the importance of preserving endangered species and other natural resources.