Butterfly Gardens

Butterfly gardening involves planning your garden to attract and encourage butterflies. The plants and flowers must provide food, water, and shelter.  If your garden is too windy they will not come so take the time to build a wind block with shrubs such as noninvasive bamboo or a yew hedge.

It is necessary for butterflies to keep their little bodies warm for flight! Our delicate wing-ed friends enjoy flowers of similar colors grouped together, just as humans do. But did you know butterflies see more colors than we do?  The more colors they have to choose from – the longer they will visit you! But not only are we looking for plants that are colorful but they must be rich in nectar.  It is vital that there are bright blooms throughout the seasons to provide a reliable habitat for your visitors to feed on.  The most important blooming season is mid to late summer when butterflies are most active.

Here is a list of ideal plants for butterfly gardens for those of you who are blessed with a sunny spot:

  • Butterfly Bush
  • Coneflower
  • Peonies
  • Turtlehead
  • Butterfly Weed
  • Petunia
  • Heliotrope
  • Annual aster
  • Autumn Joy Seedum
  • French Marigold
  • Lantana
  • Sunflower
  • Happy Returns Day Lily
  • Nasturium
  • Goldenrod
  • Milkweed
  • Yarrow
  • Hollyhock
  • Globe Flower
  • Blanket Flower
  • Joe Pie Weed
  • Black eyed susans
  • Beebalm
  • Zinnias
  • Lilac

Search images on your computer to see the wide range of colors that these plants come in.  And head down to your local garden centre to make your exciting new plant choices for summer.  Whatever you do:  do not use any pesticides on your garden as this can harm butterfly populations – use organic solutions always.  Certain butterflies like certain plants.

Do some research about what the butterflies of your area like. When in doubt – use native plants.

Photos by: Chris Potakojeffreyc42

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