The Q&A Archives: Butterfly Garden

Question: I would like to creat a butterfly garden or a herb garden...Can I combine the two and which plants do you recomend?

Answer: You can interplant herbs and butterfly attracting plants for a colorful and useful garden. One of the best ways to plant a butterfly garden is to plant in masses and to have something in bloom all the time. Some butterfly "magnets" for full sun are: achillea, coreopsis, buddleia, verbena bonariensis, purple coneflower, nepeta, asters, and sedum spectabilis. Butterflies and larvae also flock to asclepias, Virginia creeper, parsley, dill, fennel, borage, and many other herbs. Annuals to consider would be colorful and long blooming; zinnias are very poopular with the butterflies as are cosmos. To some extent you may want to start with the butterfly attractant plants, identify the ones that show up, and then plant larval food sources for those specific types. Other consideratons are to provide a wind break, a morning sunning spot with sun-warmed rocks or stones, and a saucer of muddy water for them to drink. Remember too that the larval food plants will be chewed up an unsightly, so don;t plant them in a prominent spot. Have fun with your project!

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