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Butterfly Garden
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Each species of butterfly has a host plant, meaning that there is a specific plant where each species lays its eggs and upon which the caterpillar or larvae feed. Butterflies will only stay where the host plant is available. For attracting a particular species, you’ll need to plant its preferred host.
Host Plants               Butterflies
Asters Pearl              Crescent
Blueberries                Striped Hairstreak
Cabbage                   Cabbage White
Carrot, Dill,
 Fennel, Parsley         Anise Swallowtail, Black Swallowtail
Citrus                       Giant Swallowtail
Hackberry                 Hackberry, Question Mark
Hollyhocks                Painted Lady, West Coast Lady
Lilacs                       Pale Swallowtail,
Milkweed                  Monarch, Queen
Passion Vines            Gulf Fritillary, Julia, Longwing Fritillary
Poplars                    Eastern Tiger Swallow Tail, Viceroy,
                              Weidemeyer's Admiral,
                              Western Tiger Swallow Tail
Sassafras                 Spicebush Swallowtail
Snapdragons             Buckeye
Sunflowers               Bordered Patch, Painted Lady
Violets                     Great Spangled Fritillary
Wild Senna               Cloudless Sulphur, Orange-Barred Sulphur
Willows                    Mourning Cloak, Red-Spotted Purple
Your local agricultural extension agency can be a helpful resource for information on butterflies that are native to your area. You can also learn about specific native plants to which they are attracted.

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 Fare for Butterfly Fancy

Attracting butterflies to your garden can be as simple as planting these easy-to-grow nectar plants. These can be grown in all Zones:

Buddelia - “butterfly bush” produces long spikes of fragrant flowers in deep butterfly-appealing hues.

Heliotrope – opens in the east in morning, turns west during the day, and back to the east during the night to meet the morning sun.

Lantana – exotic shrub featuring multicolored flowers; newer varieties bloom more continually than older varieties.

Milkweed – the common name for Asclepias, this wild-growing native plant grows randomly in fields and along roadsides.

Mint – easy-to-grow perennial herb. Butterflies prefer spearmint, peppermint and applemint. It’s perfect for limited spaces such as patios. Plant it in hanging baskets or flower boxes for attracting butterflies in urban areas.

Pentas – also called the Egyptian Star for its clusters of tiny flowers. These humidity-lovers will bloom all year if you pinch off the tips of the stems.

Porterweed – once thought of as merely a weed with flowers. It grows hardy and is a resilient bloomer of deep purple flowers when fertilized.

Verbana – rapid grower native in many regions, requiring little care. Butterflies are naturally attracted to its aromatic red and purple flowers, another “must have” for hanging baskets and flower boxes.

Zinnias – an old-fashioned favorite of blazing hues. They produce a feast of nectar that butterflies can’t resist. Even inexpensive seeds will produce robust flowers. For a shoestring gardening budget, they’re an absolute.

 Your Butterfly IQ: True or False?

Butterflies aren’t as plentiful now as in the past.

True. There are fewer today, with some species nearly extinct.

Butterflies thrive only in natural settings.

False. Whether limited to patio space or completely unlimited by space, you can create a garden that will attract butterflies.

Butterflies are colorblind.

False. Butterflies can actually see more colors than humans.

Butterflies are attracted to pastels.

False. Brighter is better, with crimson red their favorite color. Think sun colors such as orange, yellow, purple and vibrant pinks too.

Butterflies like deep water.

False. They prefer shallow pools. Surprisingly, butterflies have a definite preference for muddy water. You can often see them after the rain sucking water from the moist ground.

Rocks and leaves discourage butterflies.

False. Butterflies need the sun to warm their wings for flight and adore sunbathing on rocks. Their favorite place for sleeping is tucked in underneath leaves.

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--Beware of Snapdragons--

--Gardens are not made by sitting in the shade--
--My husband said if I buy any more perennials he would leave me...gosh, I'm going to miss that man!--