GROVELAND, N.Y. -- At a rest stop off I-390 in Groveland there's something blooming.

"Today we are planting two separate gardens," said Tom Snyder of Seneca Park Zoo. "These are Jacob's Ladder, another one for hummingbirds, stuff like that."

The project is a partnership between two groups. One of which is associated with conservation. The other? Not quite as obvious.

"We're a bunch of energetic, enthusiastic people who really want to do the right thing," NYS Department of Transportation environmental specialist Sarah Piecuch said.

The NYSDOT is working with representatives of the Seneca Park Zoo to preserve the habitat of the monarch butterfly.

"You know, they're pollinators, and if we don't have any pollinators, you won't have crops," Snyder said.

Monarchs cannot survive without milkweed. So the DOT has modified mowing practices, and has marked a six-mile stretch of 390 as a "Butterfly Beltway."

"Every little bit counts," Piecuch said. "When you hear about a species declining it can be overwhelming. Like, 'oh, what can I do?'"

The rest stop gardens are part practical and part educational. 13,000 cars, trucks, and buses pass through here each day.

"The purpose is to increase the knowledge of the locals and people who are traveling through the area," Snyder said.

To catch their eye and to get their attention, Which is what happened Wednesday when a bus full of out-of-town tourists stopped by.

The garden became the attraction, which is the whole idea. However random it all may have seemed.

"Very unexpected, but it felt almost like a blessing of our garden, so that's great," Piecuch said.

For two species in decline, small steps could make a big difference.

"In order to conserve you don't have to throw money at it, or time," Snyder said. "You just have to take small, manageable steps."