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Milkweed Seed Pod Collection

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  • A group opportunity. Invite your friends.

Milkweed is essential to the survival of monarch butterflies (it is their only food source!), and Ohio is a priority area for monarchs. The monarch butterflies that hatch here in the summer migrate to Mexico for the winter and are responsible for starting the life cycle all over again in the spring.

​All milkweed pods collected during this time will be processed by Butler SWCD and the Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative. The seed collected will be used to establish new plantings and create additional habitat for the monarch butterfly throughout Ohio.

When to collect seed pods

Collect milkweed pods from Sept 1 - Oct 30 if they are mature (brown seeds within typically a brown/cream seed pod, not white/cream seeds in a green seed pod).

Where to collect pods

Please make sure you have permission from the landowner before you collect pods. If you do not have any in your yard, Riverside Natural Area in Hamilton (101 Conservation Way) welcomes you to collect from their property. Please do not collect from our County or State Parks as permits are required.

​How to collect seed pods

The Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative reminds us of several things to keep in mind when collecting seed pods:

* It is best to pick the pods when the seeds contained within them are brown. Do not collect them when they are white or cream colored as they are not matured. The pod is ready to be picked when the seam of the pod opens with gentle pressure.

* As pods are collected, be sure to wear appropriate clothing as well as disposable gloves.

* Place collected pods in paper bags or grocery sacks. Do not use plastic bags as they attract moisture.

* Keep seeds in a dry, cool area until you can bring them to the Butler SWCD Office.

* If you collect milkweed varieties other than common milkweed, please mark the species on the bag along with the date and county collected in.

* Collecting pods will not affect milkweed populations in areas where they are already established.

Different Types of Milkweed

OPHI is seeking common milkweed, however Butler SWCD will happily take any milkweed variety. Butler SWCD packages up seeds to provide for free to the public, and so any variety is suitable. If you bring a variety other than common milkweed, please mark the bag ti indicate which species you are dropping off.

Where to take your Milkweed Pods

Drop the seed pods off at the:

Butler SWCD office, 1802 Princeton Rd, Hamilton, OH 45011.

Anyone is welcome to drop off milkweed pods between 8 am and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. For pod collection stations in other counties, check with your local SWCD.

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About Butler SWCD


1802 Princeton Rd, Suite 300, Hamilton, OH 45011, US

Mission Statement

Butler Soil and Water Conservation District aims to provide strong technical and educational assistance to the landowners and residents of Butler County in the field of natural resources.


The Butler Soil and Water Conservation District is a subdivision of the state of Ohio, and is assisted by the Butler County Commissioners, the Ohio Soil & Water Conservation Commission, and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources through the Division of Soil and Water Resources.

Technical assistance for conservation practices is provided without charge by the Butler SWCD through the United States Department of Agriculture, Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS) personnel.

The objectives of the Butler SWCD include:

  1. Reduce soil erosion loss on both urban and agricultural lands.
  2. Improve water quality by serving as a resource base for water quality data and educating the public concerning storm water management and erosion control.
  3. To increase both the rural and urban communities' awareness of the value, need, and ways of conserving our natural resources.
  4. Promote woodland and wildlife management by local landowners.
  5. Conduct a strong informational and educational program in the schools and with the general public.
  6. Provide adequate funding, personnel and equipment to meet the future needs of district operations.


Animals, Environment


Thu Sep 01, 2022 - Mon Oct 31, 2022


Multiple locations Hamilton, OH 45011



  • Habitat Restoration
  • Botany
  • Gardening
  • Horticulture


  • Kids
  • Teens
  • People 55+
  • Group


  • The time you spend collecting seed pods is up to you
  • Please make sure you have permission to collect from the property owner.

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