It is difficult to beat the beauty of a butterfly flitting about the garden from one flower to another. But how do you get the butterflies to visit your garden? You need to remember that butterflies also need to have food, water and places to breed. It isn’t only about the flowers that they visit, but this is the starting point.
What flowers attract butterflies?
Butterflies will be attracted by a variety of flowers. They can’t get into deep flowers to reach the nectar, so they like flowers where the nectar is easy for them to reach. Flowers with open shapes like the daisy work quite well. Most butterfly gardens will have a variety of nectar producing flowers and normally people say you should have at least 10 different flowers.
Try to use some indigenous (native) flowers, but exotic species can also work. Herbs left to go to flower also work well. A wildflower meadow will be a huge attraction to butterflies, as well as other wildlife.
Before the butterfly comes the caterpillar. Butterflies lay eggs that hatch into caterpillars. Usually they will lay their eggs on a plant that will give the baby caterpillars enough food to eat when they hatch and as they grow. When these creepy little things have grown up they make a cocoon and this might be attached to a plant or be in the ground. So you have to think about the butterflies and the caterpillars when you want to have these pretty little creatures visiting your garden. The butterflies might feed on one plant and then lay their eggs on a completely different plant where the little caterpillars will live for a while. Holes in the leaves of your plants are sometimes a good sign, showing that there will soon be plenty of butterflies flitting around.
Butterflies also like to sit in the sun in open spaces on logs or rocks. Sometimes you will also see them at the edge of the water in a pond or at a birdbath.
These few ideas should help to get you started on the path to seeing more butterflies in your yard. You can also read my post on attracting pollinators to your garden for a few more ideas.
What butterflies do you like to see visiting your garden?
[pictures from PixaBay free images]