NEW! Pollinator Observations Expanded

Budburst has expanded Nativars project observations into Pollinators observations. You can participate in the Nativars project by submitting a Pollinator observation and selecting a Nativar project species.


Budburst for Families

Budburst is the perfect way to get outside, enjoy, and learn about nature with your family. Whether you’re taking a break from your home office, supplementing your child’s e-learning program, or just getting outside for fun, Budburst has you covered. With engaging, hands-on, activities for children in grades preK-8, you’ll be prepared to explore nature and become a Budburst scientist.


How to become a Budburst Citizen Scientist


Understand the science of phenology, its history and contributions. 
Meet the five Budburst plant groups, and
Review key phenology events within each plant group.

Select your plant: one featured by a Budburst Project or Partner, or
One from among the 300 Budburst plants!
Will this be a one-time or life-cycle observation?

Register as a Budburst citizen scientist to create your account,
Post your observation reports, and
Review and analyze your data.

Monarch butterfly on Common milkweed plant

Milkweeds and Monarchs

Summer 2020 - Fall 2025

Declines in monarch butterfly populations in North America may be due to declines in milkweed plants, a necessary part of the butterfly's reproductive cycle. The butterflies lay their eggs exclusively on milkweeds, which their caterpillars (larvae) rely on for food as they develop. Researchers are studying the relationship between milkweeds and monarchs more closely, and Budburst is enlisting our citizen scientists to help answer the question, do monarch butterflies prefer to lay eggs on flowering or non-flowering milkweed stems?


We offer climate change and phenology materials and tools for formal and informal educators for all age groups. Budburst educator accounts provide a classroom portal, including plants, locations and student accounts.

Budburst data are freely available for anyone to download and use and have been used by scientists, horticulturalists, and educators in the Budburst network and beyond to address current research questions.