The fall blooms are what draw Monarch Butterflies to gardens in places like Spicewood Texas.
The multiple nectar sources, like those at the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center are essential to the Monarchs.
The butterflies ride one the cold fronts, and in between cold fronts they search for nectar. The nectar is the fuel they need on their yearly trip south.
But this drought means the usually bountiful gardens are few and far between. Most Monarchs have already traveled through Texas already. But here and there a few stragglers are still making the journey.
Monarch Butterflies move from the upper Midwest through the great plains, then Texas on into Central Mexico each fall. Scientists say its like running a transcontinental marathon then having a baby at the end. And Monarchs are the only insect on the planet with this unique migration pattern.
Thousands of these butterflies gather and roost in Mexican forests for the winter. Scientists in Mexico the number of butterflies is expected to be lower, and over the last few years the numbers have been dropping. The drought in Texas is a potential threat to the Monarchs' numbers, possibly reducing the numbers further on the return trip back north.
Texas gardens will be more valuable for the butterflies then, since they are returning to the Midwest to reproduce.