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I recently had the opportunity to attend another gardening class at the local Armstrong Garden Center. This one had to do with attracting butterflies to your garden. Today, I want to share with you my findings on how to plant a butterfly garden.
To my delight, I do have several kinds of plants that attract hummingbirds, butterflies, and other insects. I did not plan to grow a butterfly garden, it just sort of happened due to the types of plants I prefer.
Picking the Plants
You do want to be mindful of what types of plants to grow to attract butterflies to your garden. There are many plants you can grow, based on where you live. Below are many plants that attract butterflies in different ways and separated by categories. Many of these plants are native to California, although many can be found throughout the world.
Butterflies enjoy laying eggs on these plants, which will automatically add butterflies to your garden:
These are perennials, annuals, and vines that butterflies enjoy:
- Shasta daisy
- Lily of the Nile
- Passion Vine
Here are some trees and shrubs butterflies like:
- Butterfly bush
Herbs that butterflies are attracted to:
If buying some of the seeds above separately seems overwhelming, there are seed companies out there that offer variety packs, like Botanical Gardens. Their butterfly seed varieties include:
- Bring Home the Butterflies Mix
- Butterfly Banquet Collection
- Eastern Breeze Mix
- Midwest Butterfly Collection
You also want to grow certain plants where caterpillars can lay their eggs and nectar plants to drink from. Butterflies also generally enjoy colorful plants, but to keep them in your garden longer, grow plants so that butterflies will keep coming back for you to enjoy. Coneflowers, buddleia, verbena, lantana, and aster are favored by butterflies for their nectar.
Grouping Plants Together
You want to keep your butterfly plants in the same area so that butterflies don’t have to fly too far to rest and feed. Pick different types of plants to have a nice, colorful variety for you and the butterflies to enjoy. Give a small garden more height by adding an arbor with vines if there isn’t any room for trees in your garden.
Protection from Elements
If you live in a windy area or if the wind is in your area at certain times of the year, be prepared by protecting the butterflies from the wind. Grow your butterfly garden near some trees and shrubs, if you can, to give them shelter from wind and other elements.
Avoid using pesticides, as this can harm the butterflies and your plants. If you use spray pesticides, these can remove much need protein from your plants. Use alternative organic gardening practices to rid your garden of pests.
Water and Sun
Butterflies need plenty of water and sun. Add some dirt to a shallow dish. Fill the dish with water so that it comes right up to the dirt. This will change to dirt to mud, which butterflies love. Butterflies will land in the mud and suck the water out from beneath.
Butterflies also enjoy sunlight, so grow your garden in an area that gets at least six hours of sunlight. The butterflies will enjoy the warmth of the sun while drinking nectar from your plants.
Enjoy Your Butterfly Garden
By utilizing all these steps, you will attract butterflies to your garden in no time. Don’t be surprised if hummingbirds also visit, as they enjoy many of the same plants as butterflies do. Enjoy adding new plants to your butterfly garden year after year to attract even more beautiful butterflies your way.
What plants do you have in your butterfly garden or are planning to add? I hope you learned something new by reading How to Enjoy a Butterfly Garden. Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.