Tag Archive | "butterfly gardens"

Common North American Butterflies

North America has a wide variety of butterfly species. There are several hundred known species of butterfly that live in North America. We’re going to take a look at a few of the most common North American butterflies.

The monarch butterfly is one of the most well-known butterfly species. It’s common all around the United States and the southern part of Canada. Monarch caterpillars eat exclusively milkweed plants.

Because milkweed contains toxins, monarch larva and butterflies are not eaten by predators. They live mostly in open, sunny places. They especially love meadows that are full of weeds. They live on various types of milkweed, including common milkweed, scarlet milkweed, and dogbane.

Adult monarch butterflies feed off the nectar of beggarticks, coneflowers, black-eyed Susan, goldenrod, New England aster, and several types of thistle. The Eastern tiger swallowtail is certainly one of the most easily recognizable butterflies in the U.S.

It is often found in forests and streams, but may also be found around flowering bushes in city gardens. It loves flowers with a lot of nectar. Males are yellow with black decoration, and females are either yellow or black.

They generally breed on broadleaf trees like cottonwood, cherry, birch, poplar, and willow. Their favorite nectar flowers are typically phlox and milkweed. The painted lady butterfly typically lays its eggs on thistle or asters.

It is one of the most widespread butterfly species in the word, and can be found all over Africa, Europe, Asia, and North America. They seem to be especially attracted to feeding on goldenrod. They also tend to be attracted to butterfly bushes.

The red-spotted purple butterfly is a ground-dweller. They fly low, and light on low-lying branches or on the ground. They look similar to a poisonous butterfly known as the pipevine swallowtail.

They breed on willows, poplars, cherry trees, apples, hawthorns, and aspens. They feed on thistles, lilac, azaleas, phlox, petunias, lupines, butterfly bush, and bergamot, among others. The pipevine swallowtail is a beautiful butterfly with iridescent blue on the wings.

They lay eggs on many different types of trees, similar to the red-spotted purple. They also eat the same types of nectar. The cabbage white butterfly is certainly extremely common. It’s a white butterfly with few markings, and is rather small in size. It lays eggs on radishes, cabbage, broccoli, and nasturtiums.

Mourning cloak butterflies can survive throughout the winter in many parts of the world. It’s native to North America and Eurasia. Their wings are very dark red, with a yellowish border around the wings.

They also have a dark band with brighter blue spots on the wings. Their caterpillars are raised on willows, aspens, cottonwoods, elms, and paper birch trees. They are especially common on willows and elms.

Adult butterflies usually live on sap and rotting fruit, but may occasionally feed on flower nectar. If you’d like to attract certain species of butterfly, you’ll need to provide them with the food the adults need, as well as a good place to lay their eggs.

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Creating a Butterfly Garden

We’re going to look at the basics of creating a garden that is perfect for butterflies. You need to plan a garden with the purpose of attracting butterflies, keeping them in your garden, and making the environment friendly for them to breed.

The first thing you need to do is choose several plants that produce nectar for the butterflies and will hopefully provide continuous blooms through the summer. The most important time to have blooms is mid to late summer. This is when most butterflies are most active. Flowers that produce multiple blooms on a single plant and contain a lot of nectar are best.

You probably want to choose a variety of annuals for your garden, because annuals bloom all though the season. This provides butterflies with a continuous supply of nectar, and will keep the butterflies coming to your yard all season.

Some perennials are very good for attracting butterflies. Lilac and asters are favorites for butterfly gardens. Coneflowers are a lovely wildflower that butterflies adore. Herbs such as parley, dill, and mint provide good nectar for butterflies.

You can make homemade butterfly feeders from small jars, such as baby food jars. You just drill a hole in the middle of the lid and stuff it with cotton. Then you fill the jar with a mixture of 1:9 sugar and water. (1 part sugar and 9 parts water.)

Then you can decorate the jar with brightly colored bits of felt to attract the butterflies to it. Hang it somewhere in your garden and the butterflies will come suck the “nectar” out through the cotton in the lid.

In addition to providing plants that will feed the butterflies and their larva, you’ll need to be sure your yard is hospitable in other ways. Butterflies need a bit of shelter for their eggs. You’ll need to provide some sort of windbreak around your butterfly garden, so the butterflies can lay their eggs in an area where wind won’t harm them.

They also need a mud puddle at which to congregate. Butterflies like to gather at the edges of puddles, so you’ll need to provide at least one for them. You should also be sure not to use too many pesticides around your garden.

These poisons can kill butterfly larva, and they can also harm the butterflies themselves. It doesn’t take a lot of insecticide to kill these delicate creatures. Insecticides can kill delicate caterpillars before they have a chance to grow into butterflies.

They can also kill adult butterflies when they light onto the plants to rest, or when they consume nectar that has been tainted with poison. Before you spray any of your plants, be sure the creatures you’re trying to kill are actually damaging pests.

Some butterfly larva can look remarkably similar to common garden pests, and although butterfly larvae do feed on plants, they don’t typically eat enough to do any real damage. So be sure your identification is correct before you spray.

Most flowers that are brightly-colored and sweet-smelling should attract butterflies to your garden. You should plant a wide variety of flowers, mostly annuals, if you want to attract the most different types of butterflies. Since different species are attracted to different types of flowers, having a good variety will ensure that you get the most different types of butterflies visiting your garden.

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