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An Educational Guide on Monarch Butterflies

This guide is an excellent resource for teachers working in pre-schools or primary schools, who want to learn more to teach their students or raise monarch caterpillars as a hobby in your own back garden; or perhaps you’re that person, like me, who treats their caterpillars as pets, and rushes out for emergency dashes to the garden centre if you’ve run out of swan plants. Keep on reading>>

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Media Clippings

As seen in Woman’s Day October 2018.

Listen to my Pod Cast with the amazing Phyllis Brown about how my passion started with my children in 2011 and how it’s involved with me writing an Educational book and about how I now teach at schools around NZ the awareness of the monarch butterflies. Plus how I helped grow 1000’s of swan plants with the children so caterpillars don’t go hungry each Spring. I would love you to listen On Spotify, ITunes or YouTube – search Good Vibrations with Maria Romero or click on the link below. Recorded September 2018

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Giant Swan Plant Sale


I love Kahikatea Common our first event was Butterflies and Pizza, and this one was Swan Plants and Roller Skates, here anything goes.

I got reminded that my community event “giant swan plant sale/roller disco ” which would be run by kids to raise money for their various causes randomly came to me in the shower a few weeks ago!! I’m grateful, I pulled it off & everyone had a great time, who were part of it or came along. Im passionate about children selling swan plants as part of school fundraisers or personal projects such as scout camps or sporting fees. This is so much more economical than selling chocolate or something plastic, it helps spread awareness of the monarch butterfly, gets children out in nature planting and nurturing the seedlings, and teaches them patience as swan plants do take a while until the are fully grow ready for the caterpillars.

We sold over 450 swan plants for our precious caterpillars in 3 hours 🐛🤩 Scout boys sold over 100 sausages.

Thanks to all my mates that came to support me!! Especially Laura that did so many face paintings & helped me plant most nights getting the place ready and all the paper work behind the scenes, much gratitude to you 🙏🏼

World Cuisine@ who served delicious food, thanks for all your hard work preparing for the event! Lastly Phatsk8 Roller Discos the perfect combo some kids stayed on their skates for hours, all ages had a go was fun to watch – great venue to roll around. Defiantly see you more around town!!

Rotary Club of Christchurch Sunrise the butterfly house looks amazing! You should be proud! 🙏🏼 An amazing community event for Christchurch city.


It’s fantastic seeing the South Frame come to life with community events like the Giant Swan Plant, special thanks to all the families selling plants they’ve been growing all summer, passionate people of all ages sharing their knowledge and tips like how to get the most leaves on their plants. We will be back next year, with more children selling plants – so please start preparing and sowing your seeds this September 2019 onwards.

Just outside the arcade, hundreds flowed through Christchurch’s very own butterfly house, to the sweet strains of ‘Nightingale’ (aka Abi) with her beautiful original songs, What amazing talent!! 👌🏼🎤

This amazing event space is an arcade refashioned from its former life as the distinctive sawtooth-shaped roof of the ‘Southern Hospitality’ building on Montreal Street. The arcade connects us by foot, bike, scooter (or indeed rollerskates!) through to Lava Lane and Kahikatea Common. Looking forward to seeing who takes up a tenancy along here. Very interesting industrial setting and so close to the river and Mollett Street!

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F.A.Q & Helpful Tips

What happens when I run out of Swan Plants?

Buy more or simply before you start raising monarchs, make sure you have sufficient amount of plants ready. You can never have enough, the key is to cover your seedlings and your plants that you have purchased and let them grow to a decent size before exposing them to the monarchs to lay eggs on. I would recommend an average size plant of 50cm per a caterpillar. Regularly check on your plants and look for eggs each day on the under side of each leaf, any excess eggs remove and cull. As its nicer than seeing starving caterpillars running around in the long run when you have no more plants and making you feel worried and having to make emergency dashes to garden centres.

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Butterfly Goddess

I wanted a special Monarch Butterfly dress for a long time and I knew Jo Kidd was amazing and I just had to wait for the right time for the dress to be designed and created and Jo didn’t disappoint.  August I finally got my new amazing Butterfly dress from Jo Kidd Couture, an amazing talented designer. I cannot wait to do talks in my dress from now on. Continue reading “Butterfly Goddess”

Kahikatea Common | Take Flight Butterfly House

Kia ora koe!   Synchronicities happen all the time in our life! I wanted a blank wall in the central city where I could get my artist to paint a Monarch mural.  I had the funds ready which were raised within the community, but didn’t know where to start looking! I wanted a mural in the city so all children could have wings and stand in front of the mural and have their photo taken so they could spread their wings, rather than murals on private grounds within schools.

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Monarchs in Decline & Sustainability

I grates me to print such a title, but sadly its true.   Monarch’s butterflies are here to teach us many things and they need our help in boosting their numbers.  Imagine living in a world where there are no butterflies?  Today we are living in a world where there are so many endangered animals and species, because we have taken away their habitats, killed for food or hunted for money which has led to some animals becoming extinct. Continue reading “Monarchs in Decline & Sustainability”

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