The National Wildlife Federation

Community Profile

Pledge Status


Pledge Date

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Program Year


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City of Medford

Medford, MA

Breanna Lungo-Koehn


Pledge Summary

Mayor Breanna Lungo-Koehn, Mayor of Medford, Massachusetts, signed the city’s first Monarch Butterfly Pledge in 2023. In the first year of the pledge, six gateway pollinator gardens were carefully designed and planted at various entrance points into Medford. Medford City Hall now has a dedicated pollinator garden designed by the Tufts Pollinator Initiative. This garden was installed with the help from the Mayor, the Medford Garden Commission, and the Medford Department of Public Works. Signage will be installed in 2024, describing the plants, their blooming times, and which insects they attract. The signage will also inform readers on how to support and grow the pollinator community. Along with the gardens in 2023, the Mayor’s Office also created educational web pages on the official City website about pollinator gardens, as well as spotting and removing invasive plants. In the winter of 2024, a “free seed library” was installed at the Medford Public Library, giving residents access to free pollinator seeds. Mission Statement: To educate and install native pollinator plants and gardens all over Medford for Monarch butterflies and pollinators of all types, to live and thrive.

Community Spotlight

Action Items Committed for 2024

Communications and Convening

  • Launch or maintain a public communication effort to encourage residents to plant monarch gardens at their homes or in their neighborhoods. (If you have community members who speak a language other than English, we encourage you to also communicate in that language; Champion Pledges must communicate in that language.)
  • Engage with community garden groups and urge them to plant native milkweeds and nectar-producing plants.
  • Engage with city parks and recreation, public works, sustainability, and other relevant staff to identify opportunities to revise and maintain mowing programs and milkweed / native nectar plant planting programs.
  • Engage with Homeowners Associations (HOAs), Community Associations or neighborhood organizations to identify opportunities to plant monarch gardens and revise maintenance and mowing programs.
  • Engage with developers, planners, landscape architects, and other community leaders and organizers engaged in planning processes to identify opportunities to create monarch habitat.

Program and Demonstration Gardens

  • Convert vacant lots to monarch habitat.
  • Plant milkweed and pollinator-friendly native nectar plants along roadsides, medians, or public rights-of-way.
  • Earn or maintain recognition for being a wildlife-friendly city by participating in other wildlife and habitat conservation efforts (i.e., National Wildlife Federation’s Community Wildlife Habitat program).
  • Launch, expand, or continue an invasive species removal program that will support the re-establishment of native habitat for monarch butterflies and other pollinators.

Systems Change

  • Remove milkweed from the list of noxious plants in city weed / landscaping ordinances (if applicable).
  • Change weed or mowing ordinances to allow for native prairie and plant habitats.
  • Increase the percentage of native plants, shrubs and trees that must be used in city landscaping ordinances and encourage use of milkweed, where appropriate.