Monarch Flyway History

Tenacious and persistent, the Monarch Flyway team is milking this weed to benefit of all that embrace the dream. Not unlike the weed, they want to run wild...

After 25 years, the stakes are higher than ever, the Monarch Migration is being threaten due to lack of habitat in the United States and Canada and we now have more people's livelihoods at stake.


Monarch Flyway's After years of trying to tame the milkweed, Monarch Flyway is embracing the "wild" and working WITH nature to promote products made from sustainably harvested, wild crafted milkweed. "The exciting thing about this process, is that it protects and establishes Monarch habitat throughout the United States." says Debbie Dekleva, Chief Dreamer and Wild Milkweed Hunter.


Herb Knudsen - Buy Milkweed Herb Knudsen, Founder, Imaginer and Innovator, acquired the "Milkweed Project" when he was Vice President of New Ventures for Standard Oil of Ohio, and created Natural Fibers Corporation, now known as Monarch Flyway. Herb developed low volume, high value products and Companies. "People have tried to commercialize Milkweed for hundreds of years, none of them successful." said Knudsen. "After evaluating efforts by the French in the 1600's and most recently, the Milkweed Corporation of America in the 1940's we chose to develop high value products to start and sustain Monarch Flyway."

Monarch Flyway' first value-added business was Ogallala Comfort Company established in 1988. The soft, silky milkweed fibers combine with down to create hypoallergenic, more durable and more comfortable sleeping products than traditional down. Ogallala Comfort Company sells Hypodown comforters and pillows throughout the World, servicing Independent Specialty Stores, High-end Catalogs, luxury good websites and exclusive hotels.

Knowing the positive characteristics of Asclepias, (Milkweed), it's gardening benefits of creating Monarch Habitat, attracting other butterflies, soil conservation and the success of Ogallala Down, seed was allocated for the development of Asclepias Seed Company. Seed is sold for land reclamation, highway beautification, butterfly gardens and to butterfly farmers. We are able and willing to develop site specific collections based on our past experience and interest in preserving the Monarch Flyway throughout the United States.

Our most recent development is the pain relieving Milkweed Balm from the oil of the milkweed seed. Milkweed balm is used to relieve pain and restore function. It is the topical application of natural oils. "I was scheduled for a hip replacement," says Herb "I saw the milkweed oil on my shelf and wondered what would happen if I rubbed it on my hip." When he started moving and feeling better, we sent the balm to other people. To our amazement, everyone felt better and the uses of Milkweed Balm just kept expanding!

Every part of the plant can be used in a commercial application, the challenges are dovetailing supply with demand. Protecting and establishing wild milkweed stands throughout the United States and Canada is the only way to save the Monarch Migration. Finding uses for milkweed raw materials creates a winning relationships for all, but most importantly, will save the Monarch Migration for the generations that follow us. Let the dreams fly...