How to Create a Butterfly Garden

Angelique NewmanStarred Page By Angelique Newman, 15th Feb 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/25dzi55x/
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Gardening>Planting & Growing

Butterflies play an important part on our eco-system by pollinating a great deal of our harvests as well as gauging our environment’s health. Here's how we can help maintain the butterfly’s population and better our environment by creating an eye catching butterfly garden.

Our need for the butterfly

One of the attractions of summer is the butterfly; its vibrant colors, patterns and the delicate beauty is a sight for the weary eye. The butterfly can't help but capture ones attention as it flutters bye and settles on a flower, its wings sporadically beating the wind as if it were a gentle pulse. Sadly, our environment is taking its toll on these winged beauties with the loss of habitat from land development.

Our need for these creatures’ runs second to bees in maintaining a healthy planet; we can help our environment by creating our very own butterfly oasis.

What your garden should look like

Like people, butterflies find it easier to see clusters of the same plants as opposed to sparsely planted ones. They also have their preference of colors, favoring pinks, purples, white and yellow flowers. The fragrance of these blooms will also lure them.

Choose a sunny location to plant your garden; butterflies like to bask in the sun. Luckily, most of the flowers they prefer thrive in the sunlight as well. Adding bricks or rocks will not only give your garden a special charm, it will benefit the butterfly as a place for them to rest and soak up the sun.

Types of flowers

Fortunately there’s a wide variety of flowers to choose from. Species of flowers include; black-eyed susans, butterfly weed, aster, lavender, goldenrod, daylilies, marigold, hibiscus, lilac, purple coneflower, rosemary, butterfly bush, redbud, oxeye daisies, verbena, phlox.

If you want to keep the females hanging around. A guaranteed attraction for the female butterfly is to plant larval foodplants. Mind you, once the caterpillar emerges from its egg, there will be a lot of feeding on your host plants!

Types of host plants

Butterflies are picky in choosing their larval foodplants. Monarchs need milkweeds for their larvae; once the eggs hatch, the Monarch caterpillar will feed only on milkweeds.

Western Tiger Swallowtail butterfly has a broader appetite; its caterpillars feed on willow, big leaf maple, cottonwood, ash and aspen trees.

The Painted Lady caterpillar prefers hollyhocks, thistles and sunflowers.

The Red Admiral caterpillar is inclined to plants of the nettle family such as stinging nettle, false nettle and wood nettle. The picky plants are best planted in the back of the garden to avoid people from getting stung by them.

Arranging your garden

This is the fun part; decide which butterflies you would like to see more of and the types of plants that best suits you and your butterflies. You can make a template of your garden to visualize how it will look before you plant it. Landscape design templates are easy to come by and you can find dozens of them on the Internet.

Will you have tall flowers in the back or the center of your flowerbed? Will your garden be oval or round? Will you have one big garden or several smaller ones? Designs are limitless. This is where your creativity will shine; remember not just you will enjoy the garden but the butterflies that come to visit it.

So enjoy the season and watch the dance of the butterfly as they take delight in your butterfly garden.




Sources:
http://www.greenlivingonline.com/article/create-your-own-butterfly-garden
http://www.ca.uky.edu/entomology/entfacts/ef006.asp
http://www.essortment.com/all/whatplantsattr_rizt.htm
http://www.thebutterflysite.com/create-butterfly-garden.shtml
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/

Tags

Bees, Black-Eyed Susans, Butterflies, Butterfly Bush, Environment, Flowers, How To Make A Butterfly Garden, Lavender, Lilac, Marigold, Monarchs, Planting, Plants, Pollinating, Purple Coneflower, Types Of Flowers

Meet the author

author avatar Angelique Newman
I'm a writer, blogger and a member of RWA. I'm interested in the environment and when I'm not writing I'm usually spending time with my family.

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Comments

author avatar Denise O
16th Feb 2011 (#)

Just a gorgeous page. Great writing and love the pictures. Great work/art hon. I wish I could have my whole yard full of flowers but, unfortunately, I have awful allergies. Congrats on the star page, it is well deserved. Love it.
As always, thank you for sharing.:)

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author avatar Angelique Newman
16th Feb 2011 (#)

Thank you kindly Denise :) sorry about the allergies; they can be an awful thing. Thank goodness for pictures, at least they can offer a glimpse of their beauty.

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author avatar Retired
16th Feb 2011 (#)

well done, congrats on teh star page.

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author avatar Angelique Newman
16th Feb 2011 (#)

Thank you Rebecca, and thank you for stopping :)

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author avatar Val Mills
16th Feb 2011 (#)

Nice work. It's summer here in NZ right now and our garden has plenty of monarch butterflies.

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author avatar Angelique Newman
16th Feb 2011 (#)

Thanks Val! It's winter here in Canada and I would love to go to New Zealand right about now--beautiful country. Thanks for stopping by :)

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author avatar Mark Gordon Brown
16th Feb 2011 (#)

oh those are terrific pictures. I get lots of butterflies in my garden, we have lots of space and many flowers.

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author avatar Angelique Newman
16th Feb 2011 (#)

Thanks Mark, I got most of the pictures from Wikimedia and the last picture was from my niece which inspired me to write this article.
Your garden must be beautiful I bet you have some wonderful photos. Personally, I don't know a flower that can take a bad picture :)

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author avatar James R. Coffey
16th Feb 2011 (#)

Very nice job on this one. Interesting, insightful, and practical! Enjoyed it!

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author avatar Angelique Newman
16th Feb 2011 (#)

Thanks James, I truly appreciate it. Thanks for stopping by :)

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author avatar Retired
22nd Feb 2011 (#)

What a really great article.

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author avatar Angelique Newman
22nd Feb 2011 (#)

Thanks Martin and thank you for stopping by :)

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author avatar Rathnashikamani
1st Mar 2011 (#)

Butterflies are flowers that fly in different colors!

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author avatar Angelique Newman
1st Mar 2011 (#)

I love that analogy! Well put Rathnashikamani :)

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author avatar Rathnashikamani
1st Mar 2011 (#)

I'm inspired. I just wrote a poem here.

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author avatar Rathnashikamani
2nd Mar 2011 (#)

And here is that poem: http://www.wikinut.com/butterflies-that-flutter-by/1n8c2r-_/1pq8-gts/

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author avatar Humza
16th Mar 2011 (#)

beautiful work angel!!! I just love butterflies!!!
thnx alot for such a beautiful and amazing share, starr page is very well deserved!

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author avatar Angelique Newman
30th Mar 2011 (#)

Thanks Humza, I truly appreciate your kind words. Thanks for stopping by and taking a look:)

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author avatar Greenfaol
30th Mar 2011 (#)

Excellent article, with stunning pictures. Like Humza, I love butterflies as well. I think one of the reasons they are on the decline is down to the number of people cutting down nettles. The more of us that leave some in our gardens the better.
Excellent read :D

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author avatar Angelique Newman
30th Mar 2011 (#)

Thanks Greenfaol; you're so right about the nettles, hopefully this article will encourage people to save a little space for nettles in their garden :)

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author avatar Tranquilpen
22nd May 2011 (#)

Hi Angelique, those gossamer wings can tame the savage beast in all of us.A particularly destructive developer has ripped up a beautiful, parklike garden with 100 year old trees nearby, leaving the ground like a Martian landscape, dust devils and all, yet amid this greedy carnage, there is a prolific display of colorful butterflies soaking up the heat on this treeless landscape, right now, as I am writing this response. Strange?

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author avatar Angelique Newman
24th May 2011 (#)

Hi Tranquilpen, I can just imagine the bittersweet image. It's sad how man can be so destructive. Hopefully others will take note of such an interesting scene.

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author avatar deepa venkitesh
13th Jun 2011 (#)

great, lovely and super. keep writing dear.

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author avatar Angelique Newman
13th Jun 2011 (#)

Thank you deeps, I truly appreciate your kind words:) I've been working on another article so hopefully I'll be entering another one soon.

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author avatar vpaulose
26th Jun 2011 (#)

Interesting and Star-deserving. Thank you dear Angelique.

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author avatar Angelique Newman
29th Jun 2011 (#)

Thank you kindly vpaulose, I had a wonderful time creating this article and I am grateful you took the time to look at it.

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author avatar D in The Darling
20th Aug 2011 (#)

Butterfly garden?
Wow, I'd love one. Thanks for sharing my friend.

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author avatar Angelique Newman
22nd Aug 2011 (#)

Thank you D in The Darling :) butterfly gardens are beautiful and they're peaceful to watch while sipping on a cup of coffee or tea.

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author avatar Nitul anand
15th Aug 2012 (#)

nice and lovely ..!!!
Thanks for your star pages...
...CU

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author avatar Angelique Newman
15th Oct 2012 (#)

Thank you Nitul anand; your kind words are much appreciated :)

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