National Wildlife Federation Pledge to Save Monarchs

Cities, communities and individual gardeners have a critical role to play to help save the iconic monarch butterfly, whose population has been declining in recent years. Less than one percent of the western monarch population remains, while the eastern population has fallen by as much as ninety percent. Scientists attribute the population decline to degradation and loss of summer breeding habitat in the U.S. and loss of winter habitat in south-central Mexico and coastal California.

Together with other mayors across the United States, I have taken the Mayors’ Pledge on behalf of the City of Minnetonka Beach. Among other actions, the Minnetonka Beach Park Commission plans to create pollinator habitat in its expanded gardens and flora this summer.  Please join me and commit to restoring habitat for the monarch so that these butterflies will once again flourish. My personal gardens currently feature pollinator habitat to attract not only the monarch butterflies but hummingbirds and bumblebees as well.

More information about creating a habitat for monarch butterflies and pollinators is available from the U.S. Forest Service: 

Mayor Jaci Lindstrom


Message from Vickie and Curt Holt:

Hello to all our neighbors in Minnetonka Beach,

My husband, Curt, and I have been residents of Minnetonka Beach here on Old Beach Road for seven years and have thoroughly enjoyed the community and setting.  It is a beautiful place to live.   This is our seventh home we have lived in ranging from Tarrytown, New York to St. Louis, Missouri, San Diego California and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  We have enjoyed each location in large part because we have been avid gardeners for our 40 years of marriage!  Each home landscape, climate and location offers its set of opportunities and challenges. We have also been advocates for using our garden to help, albeit in a small way, to improve our environment.   Three conservation techniques we incorporate into our gardening are:  (1) Organic lawn care, (2) Plant flowers which encourage pollinators, and (3) Create Monarch Butterfly Habitats.   Today I wanted to talk about the Monarch Butterfly. 

Did you know that the monarch is the only butterfly known to make a two-way migration as birds do?  Using environmental clues, the monarchs know when it is time to travel south for the winter.  Monarchs use a combination air currents and thermals to travel long distances.   Some fly as far as 3,000 miles to reach their winter homes.   Here is a link to more you can learn about monarch migration:,way%20migration%20as%20birds%20do.&text=Using%20environmental%20cues%2C%20the%20monarchs,to%20reach%20their%20winter%20home!


Monarchs are beautiful butterflies which can bring color and movement to your garden.  And the Midwest, including Minnesota, is home for most of the Monarch Butterflies in North America.  Monarchs need a plant called milkweed in their environment because the monarch butterfly only lays its eggs on milkweed and when the caterpillar hatches from the egg it eats the milkweed before it forms a chrysalis and the eventually a butterfly.  But monarchs are in trouble.  Scientists say the monarch butterflies are at a critically low levels in North America because of destruction of their milkweed habitat along their migratory route as housing expands into their territory and the use of pesticides and herbicides increases.  This February 25, 2021 report from the Center for Biodiversity indicates the monarch population has declined by 80% in the past 2 decades.,over%20the%20past%20two%20decades.&text=The%20eastern%20monarch%20population%20is,of%20all%20North%20American%20monarchs.

But wait…all is not lost.  We can make a difference if we add milkweed to our gardens.   The Mayor of Minnetonka Beach has joined mayors across North America to make a difference for the Monarch Butterfly and add milkweed to our gardens and educate our community about the monarch butterfly.  Here are a couple of links to more about restoring our environment to encourage monarchs:

Restoring Habitat for Monarch Butterflies | National Wildlife Federation (

And finally, here is a link to a great article with frequently asked questions about Monarch Butterflies.  Please share this with your friends and family.

Thank you Minnetonka Beach.  It is fun to make a difference for the monarchs and to make sure we are taking care of this special place!

Vicki & Curt Holt