If you enjoy watching butterflies fluttering by then it is time to plant flowers that attract these gossamer creatures in your garden. Butterflies are important creatures, not lightweight beauties that simply decorate our world. They are always an indicator of the quality of their ecological surroundings and are powerful pollinators, for where there are butterflies there will be abundant plant and flower life. As our planet loses more and more of its forests, meadows and gardens and uses more and more chemical pesticides butterfly populations are threatened. So right in your own back yard you can help save a species and create living beauty for your family to enjoy.
To make a butterfly world in your outdoor space you must plan a garden that will attract and sustain butterflies. Butterflies love nectar, they survive upon it, so by planting many different nectar-producing plants you will ensure that butterflies come to your house for dinner. Here are some tips on inviting some fluttering friends into your own backyard:
1. Butterflies love sunshine so chose a sunny spot for their garden. Grouping flowers of similar color together in clusters is a definite call of the wild to a butterfly. Flowers with many smaller blossoms in clusters are butterfly favorites, like the aptly named Butterfly bush (Buddleia.)
2. Annuals are perfect plants for your butterfly garden because the just keep on blooming through the spring and summer seasons and are a regular source of food.
3. Butterflies are light and therefore do not like to battle the wind they prefer sheltered corners so plant flowers away from an open, windy area. You can create windbreaks by planting some bushes or trees around the butterfly garden like a shield, allowing the butterflies to get to their nectar without a struggle. Some good choices would be berry bushes, hydrangeas, purple smoke tree or cypress.
4. When choosing plants that will attract butterflies, think locally, you will need to research what larval food plants would be the preferred choice of your local specimens, basically even butterflies have neighborhood preferences and you can find out what those are by looking on the internet or going to your local nursery.
5. Like all things in the garden an adequate supply of sunshine and water will make your butterfly garden successful. Butterflies drink from shallow pools and a bowl of water with sand added to it are perfect butterfly watering holes.
6. Finally here is a list of some great flowers to plant in your butterfly haven: Peony, Petunia, Dill, Mint, Queen Anne’s lace, Nasturtium, Marigolds, Shasta Daisies, Aster, Hollyhock, Goldenrod, Butterfly Bush, and Lantana. And don’t forget to research what your local butterflies like the best as they do have regional favorites.
Enjoy watching these delicate beauties fluttering contentedly as they gather their nectar in your own butterfly garden, they make hard work look so beautiful.