One on the joys of raising plants is to see them pass on your good karma by helping to sustain other life-forms. Butterflies and bees are two well loved winged creatures. Today we will talk about butterflies.
Butterflies are fun for everyone, especially kids. Attracting them can be of two levels of seriousness. Level one is planting the things that butterflies like to feed on (butterfly nectar plants). If you really want to get into it, then you can begin to plant those things that butterflies will lay their eggs on, and that their baby caterpillars will love to eat. For now, let’s just assume you want to attract butterflies to visit. You can decide later if you want to up the ante.
|Small florets like those on this butterfly bush attract butterflies|
Listed below are butterfly nectar plants we have at Sprout right now followed by the types of native butterflies (the ones that can be found in New York) that they attract…
Butterfly Bush: (one of the best plants for this purpose) Eastern Tiger, Spicebush Swallowtail, Pipevine, Variegated Fritillary, Great Spangled Fritillary, Monarch, Painted Lady, American Lady, Red Admiral, Question Mark, Silver-Spotted Skipper, Wild Indigo Duskywing, Horace’s Duskywing
Echinacea (aka purple coneflower, the other best choice): Painted Lady, Swallowtail, Great Spangled Fritillary, Pearl Crescent, Monarch, Painted Lady, American Lady, Wild Indigo Duskywing, Horace’s Duskywing
Oregano: (who would have thunk it?): Swallowtail, Variegated Fritillary, Silver-Spotted Skipper, Wild Indigo Duskywing
Lantana: (you will notice the small florets, like the butterfly bush): Swallowtail, Spicebush Swallowtail, Monarch, Red Admiral, Silver-Spotted Skipper, Wild Indigo Duskywing
Zinnia: Painted Lady, Swallowtail, Silvery Checkerspot, American Lady, Silver-Spotted Skipper
Salvia: American Lady, Silver-Spotted Skipper
Sedum autumn joy: Pearl Crescent
|Question Mark butterfly|
We would really love to hear about the different types of butterflies you see. If you get pictures of them, show us! Butterfly identification is fun, and I’ve heard that people who get bored of bird watching move on to butterfly watching.
Information painstakingly cross-referenced from the Butterfly Site http://www.thebutterflysite.com/.