Creating A Butterfly Garden For Beauty And Peace Of Mind

Creating a butterfly garden is beneficial in several ways. If done properly, it provides a natural, healthy environment for butterflies, but it is also therapeutic for human consumption. And it need not be difficult nor stressful to accomplish.

Start your butterfly garden with a plan. Now, that does sound stressful, but the plan does not have to be a “21-day complete it or fail” exercise in futility. Just calmly consider how you can convert your available area into one that is inviting for butterflies. It can take a few weeks or years. It’s your plan, so don’t stress out over it, enjoy the process.

Creating a butterfly garden is definitely a process and a mindset. Each time you buy a plant, think about how it will fit into your landscape and if it will be an added attraction for your winged friends.

Butterflies are definitely attracted to certain areas, and you can transform your planting area to meet their needs by thinking through the kinds of plants and where those plants will be located.

Flowers that work best are those that have many blooms clustered together and are shallow so that nectar is close to the surface. Here are a few great plants that will bring quick results:

  • Brazilian Verbena
  • Purple Cone Flowers
  • Zinnias – all colors
  • Joe Pye Weed
  • Milkweed
  • Butterfly Bush
  • Sedum
  • Salvia
  • Heliotrope

This list is certainly not exhaustive since there are many nectar producing flowers. Also, keep in mind that there are different species in different areas. It has everything to do with your climate and elevation. Find out what types of flowers are best for your particular area.

In addition to providing food for adults, you can also provide host plants for birthing and nurturing larvae. Again, the kinds of species in your area will dictate what host plants you should consider. Just know that if you are successful, the caterpillars will be very destructive to the host plant.

Two other ways to improve your chances of having frequent visitors are to have water and protection available. Water is best provided in very shallow pools or even simple puddles. Protection from wind and harsh elements can come in the form of a wooden fence next to your garden or an overhang on a shed or house.

One not so well know fact about butterfly feeding is that some are not nectar lovers. Instead, they feed on very ripe or rotting fruit or carrion. A plate of sliced bananas or papaya might be just the ticket for attracting some very beautiful creatures.

The whole process is quite therapeutic. Provide beauty in the form of attractive blooms and flowers and you will be able to enjoy them yourself. You can sit for long periods of time and watch as the butterflies and other insects browse each little nook and cranny for their nectar reward.

And don’t forget to have a camera handy so you can capture photos to view during less warm and beautiful seasons. Use the macro setting on your camera and you will discover some really interesting markings and body parts that are not usually seen.