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Monarch Eggs and/or Caterpillars
Available now thru late September, our Monarch Eggs and/or Caterpillars are for home or school rearing projects. Butterfly rearing is educational and rewarding for youth and adults. Monarch butterflies are easy to raise. In just 28 to 32 days, Monarch metamorphosis [life stages: from egg to caterpillar to pupa to adult butterfly] is completed. And no matter what your age, you will be fascinated by the process!

Sporadically, throughout the summer, we also offer Black Swallowtail, Giant Swallowtail, Painted Lady, American Lady, and Red Admiral caterpillars. The USDA governs which states we are permitted to ship each butterfly species to, so unless you live in one of the states we are permitted to ship that particular caterpillar to, do not place an order. We will not ship  your order and will charge you a $1.00 service charge to cancel your order and refund your payment. 

We now have Cecropia Moth caterpillars available to those who reside in Pennsylvania and have access to birch tree leaves. Please scroll down for details.

   We do not sell butterfly eggs and caterpillars (larvae) which were taken from the wild. Our eggs and caterpillars are gathered from our butterfly rearing facility located inside our greenhouse. Inside our rearing facility, we closely monitor the butterflies to assure that their environmental and nutritional needs are being met.  

~ Near the bottom of the page, we offer mesh Popups that can be used as caterpillar rearing chambers. ~

We should have Monarch eggs and or caterpillars available June thru September. Orders will be filled in a first come, first served basis. Depending upon supply and demand, your order may be filled the day it arrives or it may not be filled for a few weeks.
A few extra Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars are shipped with extra order (just in case a few do not survive the trip from our place to yours). 
Once you place an order, please watch your email closely as we will let you know when you order is shipped and when you should expect delivery.
We ship butterfly eggs and/or caterpillars via USPS Priority Mail.

If you are a teacher and you do not want your order shipped until school begins in fall, please print our online order form, fill it out, write on the order form "Do not ship until the week of      (a Monday date)    or the week of    (a Monday date)   " and mail the order form to us with payment (check or money order).
    
 If you are a teacher and you want to use our online shopping cart to place your order (so you can use your credit card for payment), please: (1) place your order and then (2) immediately send an email to RoseFranklin@aol.com which states your name (the name the order is being shipped to) and says  "Do not ship until the week of      (a Monday date)    or the week of    (a Monday date)   " . You must provide a first and second choice of the weeks you would like your order shipped. In the subject line of your email, type "Hold Monarch Order". We will then email you to let you know we received the email asking us to hold your order. If you do not receive an email from us within 24 hours stating that we received your request to hold your order, please email us again. If we do not receive an email requesting that your order be held and we do ship your order before school begins, your money will not be refunded.

If you are a teacher who plans to rear Monarchs in the classroom this fall, please scroll down and read the article at the bottom of the page. It's entitled 'Raising Healthy Monarchs in the Classroom'.
   

We do not accept phone orders or purchase orders. 
All orders must be accompanied by payment.  No payment = no shipment.

Important Note: Do not consider ordering Monarch caterpillars (larvae) unless you have access to several large Milkweed (Asclepias) plants. Your caterpillars will require much more milkweed than we will ship with your order. Indeed, the caterpillars may need fresh milkweed leaves immediately upon delivery to you. Aside from Milkweed plants, you will also need a suitable rearing  chamber (a 10 gallon aquarium with screened lid or a Popup, pictured below).

10 Monarch eggs and/or Caterpillars -  $17.00  

If you have a suitable rearing chamber (example: a small aquarium with screened lid) and access to lush, green milkweed plants (Common Milkweed, Swamp Milkweed, or Tropical Milkweed), you might want to order our  10 Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars (sorry, no choice between eggs or caterpillars). Your eggs and/or caterpillars may be shipped on a potted Milkweed plant or on fresh cut Milkweed leaves (our choice, not yours). Rearing instructions included.

We
are permitted to ship Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars on potted Milkweed plants to the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey,
New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. If you live in one of these states you may receive either a potted Milkweed plant or cut Milkweed. Sorry, no choice.
We are permitted to ship Monarch caterpillars (not eggs) on cut Milkweed (not potted Milkweed) to the following states:
Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, and South Dakota.
Do not place an order unless you live in one of the states we are permitted to ship Monarchs to.
Your order will not be shipped and we will charge you  a $1.00 service charge to cancel your order and refund payment.


Today we are only accepting orders for Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars that will ship between Monday, August 31, and Wednesday, Sept .2 (our choice of shipping day, not yours). If you do not want your order shipped one of these three days, DO NOT place your order today. 

 

20 Monarch eggs and/or Caterpillars -  $28.00  

If you have a suitable rearing chamber (example: a small aquarium with screened lid) and access to lush, green milkweed plants (Common Milkweed, Swamp Milkweed, or Tropical Milkweed), you might want to order our  10 Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars (sorry, no choice between eggs or caterpillars). Your eggs and/or caterpillars may be shipped on a potted Milkweed plant or on fresh cut Milkweed leaves (our choice, not yours). Rearing instructions included.

We
are permitted to ship Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars on potted Milkweed plants to the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey,
New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. If you live in one of these states you may receive either a potted Milkweed plant or cut Milkweed. Sorry, no choice.
We are permitted to ship Monarch caterpillars (not eggs) on cut Milkweed (not potted Milkweed) to the following states:
Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Dakota, Oklahoma, and South Dakota.
Do not place an order unless you live in one of the states we are permitted to ship Monarchs to.
Your order will not be shipped and we will charge you  a $1.00 service charge to cancel your order and refund payment.

Today we are only accepting orders for Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars that will ship between Monday, August 31, and Wednesday, Sept .2 (our choice of shipping day, not yours). If you do not want your order shipped one of these three days, DO NOT place your order today. 

 

If you do not have a supply of Milkweed plants but you still want to rear Monarch caterpillars, please order Tropical Milkweed plants from the 'Milkweed Plants' page of our web site. The Tropical Milkweed plants should be ordered at least a month before you order your Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars so that the plants will have time to grow larger before the caterpillars arrive. Eight of these plants should be enough to feed 10 caterpillars, so long as you order the plants a month before you order the Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars.   
If you are going to use our Tropical Milkweed plants as caterpillar food, I suggest you keep the plants in pots (not plant them in the garden). Keep the potted plants in full sun and water as necessary (which will likely be every day).  Then when your caterpillars need Milkweed, put a potted plant into the aquarium (or whatever you are using as a rearing chamber). You might want to pull a plastic bag up over the pot and wrap a twist tie around the bag near the stem/soil line of the plant. This way you can lay the plant down if necessary and not have to worry about soil spilling from the pot into the aquarium. Because the leaves of Tropical Milkweed will wilt fast if cut off the plant, it is best to keep the leaves on the plant, putting a whole potted plant into the aquarium.

Important Note: We are now sold out of Tropical Milkweed for the 2015 season. If you do not have lush, green milkweed plants growing near your home (you will have to gather fresh leaves every day), do not place an order for Monarch eggs and/or caterpillars.

If you have never reared Monarch butterflies, please read these two articles:
Grow Your Own Monarch Butterflies
Monarch Butterfly Metamorphosis

Live within driving distance of central Pennsylvania?
If so, you might want to attend one of our Gardening For Butterflies presentations.
Come see the butterflies!

Saturday, July 18  ~  Sunday, July, 19  ~  Saturday, July 25  ~  Sunday, July 26  ~
Please visit the 'Home' page of our web site for more information.

Monarch  Chrysalises (Pupae)    5 for $20.00

You don't have access to Milkweed plants but you would like to see a newly emerged Monarch butterfly (maybe even see the butterfly emerge from its chrysalis)? Then this is for you! You will receive Monarch chrysalises (pupae)--- from which should emerge five majestic Monarch butterflies in just a few days. When the butterflies are able to fly, just release them outdoors.
Upon delivery, you should put the chrysalises in a container (a plastic or cardboard box that is at least 5" high) lined with paper towels and covered with window screen or tulle (available in fabric stores).  You could also lay them along the bottom edges of a small Popup Cage (shown below) or similar mesh, screen, or netted container.

We
are permitted to ship Monarch chrysalises to the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. 
We are not permitted by the USDA to ship to other destinations. Sorry, no exceptions.
Do not order Monarch chrysalises from us if your state is not listed above. We will not ship  your order and will charge you a $1.00 service charge to cancel your order and refund your payment.

We have no Monarch chrysalises available this week. Please check back next week. When we have chrysalises available, a shopping cart button will appear to the right to allow ordering.  (Be sure to click on 'Refresh' to ensure you are viewing the most recent version of this page.)

 

 

5 Black Swallowtail Caterpillars - $15.00

The caterpillars will be shipped on either a potted parsley plant or on cut parsley. You will need lots of extra parsley to feed to them. If you have no parsley plants, please do not order the caterpillars. 

We are permitted to ship Black Swallowtail caterpillars to Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York,  North Carolina, Ohio,  Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont,  Virginia West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
If you do not live in one of these states, do not place an order for the caterpillars. We will not ship  your order and will charge you a $1.00 service charge to cancel your order and refund payment.

Sorry, Sold Out for 2015.

caterpillar host plants; rue; Ruta graveolens Rue  (Ruta graveolens)

Rue is a beautiful garden plant, with lacy blue-green leaves and many small but showy bright yellow flowers from June through August. Known as herb o' grace, because its branches were once used by Catholic priests to sprinkle holy water. Rue grows 30"-36" high. Deer resistant.
Note: Some people are allergic to Rue, causing small water blisters or rash to break out on skin.

It is utilized as a host plant by Black Swallowtail and Giant Swallowtail butterflies.

We CAN ship plants to the following states within the USA:  Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia.
State and Federal regulations prohibit us from shipping to other destinations. If you do not live in one of the states we are permitted to ship to, please do not order. We will not ship your order and will charge you a $1.00 service charge to cancel your order and refund your payment.


Perennial, zones 4-9.    $6.00 each

 

 

 

5 Giant Swallowtail Caterpillars - $15.00

The caterpillars will be shipped on a potted Rue plant or on fresh cut rue foliage. You will need extra Rue to feed to them. If you have no Rue plants, please do not order the caterpillars (or order several rue plants above, so long as you live in a state we are permitted to ship plants to). 

We are permitted to ship Giant Swallowtail caterpillars to Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana,  Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio,  Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.
If you do not live in one of these states, do not place an order for the caterpillars. We will not ship  your order and will charge you a $1.00 service charge to cancel your order and refund payment.

Sorry, Sold Out for 2015.

Painted Lady caterpillars, larvae 5 Painted Lady caterpillars - $12.50       Should be available sporadically during summer.

If you already have a suitable rearing chamber (example: a small aquarium with a screened lid or something similar to the Caterpillar Castles shown near the bottom of this page), and a few nice sized  Hollyhock near by to use as caterpillar food, you have all you need to rear these caterpillars. We will provide the caterpillars  and the instruction sheet.
Important note: If you do not have Hollyhock to use for caterpillar food, please order three or four of these plants below (so long as you live in one of the states we are permitted to ship plants to). The host plant (either potted plant or cut foliage) shipped with your caterpillars will not be large enough to feed them to maturity.

We are permitted to ship Painted Lady caterpillars to the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia,  West Virginia, and Wisconsin.
If you do not live in one of these states, do not order the caterpillars.  We will not ship the order and will charge you a $1.00 service charge to cancel the order and refund payment. 

Sorry, Sold Out for 2015.

Hollyhock 'Pastorale'      (Alcea rosea ficifolia 'Pictorale')

Of all the old-fashioned cottage garden flowers, Hollyhock tends to be the favorite. The stately flower stalks of 'Pastorale' Hollyhock often grow 5' high and provide a charming vertical accent to the garden. Hollyhocks usually bloom June thru August. While Hollyhocks  are biennial, self-sown seedlings should insure a continuing supply of plants without any effort on the gardener's part. 'Pastorale' includes a splendid mixture of pastel flower colors. Sorry, no choice of flower color. Deer resistant.

We CAN ship plants to the following states within the USA:  Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. State and Federal regulations prohibit us from shipping to other destinations. If you do not live in one of the states we are permitted to ship to, please do not order. We will not ship your order and will charge you a $1.00 service charge to cancel your order and refund your payment.

Biennial which usually reseeds.          Should be available in June.
 

American Lady caterpillars, larvae 5 American Lady caterpillars - $12.50      

If you already have a suitable rearing chamber (example: a small aquarium with a screened lid or something similar to the Caterpillar Castles shown near the bottom of this page), and Artemisia 'Silver Brocade', you have all you need to rear these caterpillars.
Important note: If you do not have Artemisia 'Silver Brocade' to use for caterpillar food, please order at least two Artemesia 'Silver Brocade' plants below (so long as you live in one of the states we are permitted to ship plants to). The caterpillars will be shipped on either a potted Artemisia 'Silver Brocade' or on fresh cut foliage).
The black arrow in the photo points to the white spot that distinguishes the American Lady from the Painted Lady.

We are permitted to ship American Lady caterpillars to the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia.
If you do not live in one of these states, do not order the caterpillars. We will not ship the order and will charge you a $1.00 service charge to cancel the order and refund.

Sorry, Sold Out for 2015.

 'Silver Brocade' Artemisia  (host plant for American Lady caterpillars)
(Artemisia stellariana 'Silver Brocade')


Looks very similar to annual dusty miller! Grows 10"-15" high and requires well drained soil. Utilized as a host plant by American Ladies. Deer resistant and drought tolerant. Must have excellent drainage to survive the winter.

We CAN ship plants to the following states within the USA:  Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin, and West Virginia. State and Federal regulations prohibit us from shipping to other destinations. If you do not live in one of the states we are permitted to ship to, please do not order. We will not ship your order and will charge you a $1.00 service charge to cancel your order and refund your payment.
Perennial, zones 6-8.       $6.00 each

 

Popup Cages

These Popup Cages are great for butterfly rearing. They keep caterpillars and butterflies in---and predators out.
Five sides of the cage are mesh while one side has a vinyl window.

White Popup Cage, small

12" X 12" X 12" with vinyl window

$10.50 each

Black Popup Cage, small

12" X 12" X 12" with vinyl window

$ 10.50 each

White Popup Cage, medium

13.5" X 13.5" X 24" with vinyl window

$17.50 each

Black Popup Cage, medium

13.5" X 13.5" X 24" with vinyl window

$17.50 each

24" X 24" X 36" Large Popup Cage

This popup cage can be used as an enclosure for rearing caterpillars or as an enclosure for temporarily holding adult butterflies.
Like the other Popup Cages, the parasitoid-resistant mesh keeps the caterpillars in and the predators out.
This Popup Cage does not have a vinyl window.


$36.00 each


 

Black 13" X 17" Catch and Release Popup Cage

This popup cage can be used in the field for gathering insects or used as an enclosure for rearing caterpillars.
Like the other Popup Cages, the parasitoid-resistant mesh keeps the caterpillars in and the predators out.


$12.00 each


 

Some American Indians believed that for a wish to come true, you had to capture a butterfly, whisper your wish to it, and then set the butterfly free. The butterfly would carry your wish to Heaven, where the Creator could decipher the message and grant the wish.

Raising Healthy Monarchs in the Classroom              by Rose Franklin

Before introducing your Monarch caterpillars into the container they will be raised in, you should sanitize the container. To sanitize, wash the container in a solution of 10% Clorox and 90% water, letting the sanitizing solution on the container for 10 minutes. Then rinse, and rinse, and rinse several more times until all of the Clorox solution is completely removed. Allow the container to dry thoroughly (preferably outdoors in full sun) before putting the caterpillars inside. The countertop or table upon which the caterpillar rearing container will sit, and any utensils that will be used in the rearing of your caterpillars, should be sanitized too.

Cleanliness is important but so too is the health of the host plant being fed to the caterpillars. We have all heard that “you are what you eat.” While this saying holds much merit for humans, it is more true for butterflies, and especially during the larval stage of development. In the case of humans, what we eat is important, but also of importance is exercise, emotional state, and level of stress. With caterpillars though, it’s all about the food; for all caterpillars do is eat. Eat and poop. Their health doesn’t depend upon how much they exercise or what they think about during the course of a day. It depends essentially upon what is entering and exiting their stomachs. 

Milkweed varies in nutritional quality based upon species and age. For teachers who are raising Monarchs in the classroom in September, the issue of milkweed age in an important consideration. If the caterpillars are being reared on Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca), they are probably malnourished.  By September, Common Milkweed is headed toward dormancy and its leaves are no longer packed with high-quality nutrients. Malnourished, the caterpillars’ immune system will be weakened and resistance to disease will be compromised. When the immune system is not strong enough to fight off the pathogens that cause bacterial, viral, parasitic, and fungal infections, disease is more prone to develop.

Because the health of the caterpillar so much depends upon the health of the larval food, I suggest that if you are intending to raise Monarchs in the classroom in September, you also plan on having large, potted Tropical Milkweed (Asclepias curassavica) plants to utilize as larval food. To have large plants in September, you can either sow Tropical Milkweed seeds in April or May, or you can purchase small potted plants in June and then raise them to maturity. My suggestion is that you keep the plants in pots, moving them to slightly larger pots as necessary for continued root growth. The plants should be grown outdoors, preferably in full sun.

Since Tropical Milkweed does not go dormant until long after Common Milkweed does, Tropical should be the species of choice in rearing Monarch caterpillars in September. And to insure that the foliage is as nutritious as possible, the leaves should not be cut from the stems (this, because Tropical Milkweed foliage wilts quickly once cut from the plant). Instead, potted plants should be used to feed the caterpillars, replacing devoured plants with fresh, lush ones, as necessary.  

Will using Tropical Milkweed as the food plant guarantee healthy Monarchs? No. Quite frankly, it is much easier to raise Monarchs (and other butterfly species too) in June, July, and August, than it is to raise them in September and October. During the summer months, disease-causing pathogens, parasites, parasitoids, and predators all multiply exponentially in nature. By September, they are in the air, on plants, on adult butterflies, everywhere. With an abundance of pathogens abound, there is more chance for caterpillars to become infected.

Tropical Milkweed, because it contains more nourishment in September than Common Milkweed does, will certainly aid the caterpillars in keeping their immune systems strong. But with disease causing pathogens dramatically increased in number by September, it is difficult for the caterpillars to escape infection.

Most teachers are able to raise healthy Monarchs, even in September, but some do periodically encounter problems. If you have experienced problems in the past, I suggest you try rearing your caterpillars on Tropical Milkweed. The stronger the caterpillars’ immune systems, the more likely it is that they will survive to become healthy adults. And remember that in nature, less than 2% of Monarchs survive long enough to become adults. If your success rate is higher than 2%, you have done a better job of raising your butterflies than Mother Nature does.

Two ways to order: (1) Utilize our on-line shopping cart or  (2) print our online order form, fill it out, and then mail it to us, along with your check or money orderWe do not accept phone orders. Some of the features of our online shopping cart fail to work correctly with some Internet Service Providers. If you have problems using our shopping cart, please print our order form, fill it out, and then mail it to us. Sorry for the inconvenience. 
 Quantities are limited. Orders will be reserved to fill orders in the sequence in which orders are received.
Monarch eggs, caterpillars, larvae, pupae, chrysalises, rearing kits, butterfly farming

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Rose Franklin's Perennials
107 Butterfly Lane      Spring Mills, PA  16875

(814) 422-8968        Email:  RoseFranklin@aol.com

During our busy shipping season (May 1 thru September 30), please email, don't call.

Copyright © 2002-2015.  [Rose Franklin's Perennials]. All rights reserved.
Revised: August 29, 2015