Trees used by Monarch butterflies in California

Doug Yanega dyanega at
Thu Sep 24 14:07:22 EDT 1998

Mark Walker wrote:

>How much of a problem is this species when it comes to propagating itself?
>I have no data, but it sure seems like the trees stay pretty much where they
>were originally planted.
>I don't mean to argue in favor of planting exotics.  I'm just curious.

I don't think they spread without help well at all - but that's not so much
the objection here as the idea that one is *replacing* and *excluding*
native vegetation and animals when one plants eucalypts (there are several
species used). That 100-year-old grove likely has maybe one other plant
species in it, few insects, few or no vertebrates, etc. Eucalypts are
famous for that sort of sterilization, here in Brazil, too. If you want to
sterilize an area, why not just put up a bunch of concrete totem poles
instead? Ecologically speaking, there wouldn't be much difference, except
that grass could grow between totem poles... ;-) (Smilie for the

Doug Yanega    Depto. de Biologia Geral, Instituto de Ciencias Biologicas,
Univ. Fed. de Minas Gerais, Cx.P. 486, 30.161-970 Belo Horizonte, MG   BRAZIL
phone: 31-499-2579, fax: 31-499-2567  (from U.S., prefix 011-55)
  "There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness
        is the true method" - Herman Melville, Moby Dick, Chap. 82

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