9 AM - 4 PM
Admission: Kids are FREE; suggested donation of $5 per adult.
(Advanced ticketing is not available. Bring your admission donations to the event.)
See important COVID-19 and Festival guidelines below
The news about Monarch Butterflies this year is distressing--but the 9th Annual NH Monarch Festival will provide hands-on tools and expert advice on how families can sustain and improve habitat for migrating Monarchs and other vital pollinators, all while giving kids fun ways to celebrate and learn about these amazing creatures.
In spite of 25 years of efforts across the U.S. by citizen scientists and communities to provide more milkweed habitat for their annual migration, the total forest area occupied by Monarchs overwintering in Mexico has decreased 26% from last year, and a startling 65% since two years ago.
The NH Monarch Festival, held annually at Petals in the Pines in Canterbury since 2013, focuses on increasing public awareness of the Monarch’s plight, and ways to help them. The Festival will include:
Monarch Education Station - Learn about the Monarch life-cycle, migration, tagging and milkweed. We'll tag butterflies if we have any newly-emerged butterflies in our monarch rearing tent.
Pollinator Meadow - Walk along the paths to observe pollinators at work and find all 3 native milkweeds growing here. Petals in the Pines is one of 37 locations in NH that are part of the Homegrown National Park project--a grassroots movement started by professor and author Doug Tallamy to regenerate natural diversity (homegrownnationalpark.org) See how native trees, shrubs, flowers and grasses can do vital work of feeding pollinators, managing water, and sequestering carbon--and look beautiful at the same time.
Free Milkweed Seed - Free Swamp Milkweed seed and planting instructions available, while supplies last.
"Ask A Master Gardener" Booth - Bring your gardening questions or check out all the information about gardening and planting for pollinators.
Story Time - offered throughout the day, our book authors will be reading their butterfly-themed books. See more details below.
Monarch Festival Photo Booth - Wear your wings, or borrow ours. Lots of props and signs to use in front of our giant inflatable monarch.
Games for kids - the Metamorphosis Relay and Migration Frisbee Game. Adults can play too!!
"Tale Trail" - Read the pages of "The Seeds of the Milkweed" posted along our woodland trails and passing through our pollinator meadow. Look for milkweed and monarchs along the way!!
Our Farm Stand Porch Shop - Leaf Stone Bird Baths, some painted with a Monarch motif, Silk Scarves, some with butterflies, and products from Hazel Moon Botanicals, Hills Corner Farm and John Polizzi's gorgeous photo cards.
Tanglewood Hollow - Tanglewood Hollow's mission is to help families build a stronger connection to the natural world through educational resources, hands on materials, curiosities, and more! Explore, play, discover. I use their resources in my Nature Explore Outdoor Classroom and love them!!
Carolyn Cutler Hughes - Children's Book Author and Illustrator of Flutterfly, A Butterfly is not an Ant, and many more books! Meaningful stories, inspired by nature, that can help people through a difficult time.
Sharon Rask Huntington - Children's Book Author of Mirabelle's Metamorphosis
Join Mirabelle as she goes through the various stages of growth, from egg to chrysalis to butterfly. Story text accompanied by beautiful, full color photos.
Condi Family - Visit their "nectar stand" for lemonade/cider (depending on the weather). Water, popcorn, and butterfly cookies will also be sold. The popular Monarch life-cycle bracelet kits and "new" Monarch peg doll kits will also be for sale.
IMPORTANT NOTES FOR VISITORS:
SCROLL DOWN FOR A LIST OF RESOURCES
Do you belong to a club or organization that is looking for a speaker? We have an hour-long Monarch power point presentation that has been enjoyed by garden clubs, women's groups and libraries. Filled with beautiful photos taken here at our gardens, you'll learn about the life-cycle of the Monarch, their amazing migration to Mexico, what they need to survive, and how you can help.
Donna has been a citizen scientist for Monarch Watch since 2008, tagging Monarchs annually before their fall migration. She weaves in interesting stories from her experience with these amazing creatures over the years.
Scroll down the left column on this page. Check out For Kids and Education. There are activities and educational information here for kids of all ages. If you want to get involved helping the monarchs click on Citizen Science.
So many great resources here! This link takes you to the "Spring" page. At the top you can click on Fall or Winter for so much more!!
This is something that should be done with the supervision of a parent or adult. Keeping the cage/net cleaned daily is very important. Please do your research before committing to this.
Watch as these kids assemble a bracelet with beads that represent the life cycle of monarchs. Kits are available on our Farm Stand Porch Shop for $2.00 each, while supplies last.
Books for Kids:
Fly, Butterfly by Bonnie Bader
Are You a Butterfly? by Judy Allen and Tudor Humphries
Milkweed Visitors by Mary Holland
This is for starting seeds indoors. The easy way to plant milkweed seed is to plant it outside in your garden just before the ground freezes, around late October.
This is local information from research at UNH with plant lists for NH gardens. Once you get to this page there are several more links on related subjects. Good stuff!
This is a great resource! A one-stop shop for several plant lists from many reputable organizations.
Instructions on how to create a Monarch Way Station. Make sure to register it too!
Many schools are creating butterfly gardens. Here is a great resource to get started!
There are many organizations out there doing good work to help the monarch, pollinators and that promote the use of native plants. Here are a few of them.
Doug Tallamy Books
Bringing Nature Home and Nature's Best Hope by Douglas Tallamy
Nature's Best Hope powerpoint by Doug Tallamy on You Tube
The Living Landscape by Rick Darke and Douglas Tallamy
Monarchs & Butterflies
The Monarch, Saving our Most-Loved Butterfly by Kylee Baumle
Butterfly Book by Donald & Lillian Stokes & Ernest Williams
Caterpillars of Eastern North America by David L. Wagner
Gardening and Landscaping
Gardening for Butterflies by the Xerces Society
Attracting Native Pollinators by the Xerces Society
The Green Garden by Ellen Sousa
Native Plants of the Northeast by Donald J. Leopold
Native Plants for New England Gardens by Mark Richardson and Dan Jaffe
Integrated Landscaping: Following Nature's Lead, UNH Cooperative Extension