Kathy's Gardening Guide: Butterfly gardens

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“Happiness is like a butterfly, the more you chase it, the more it will evade you, but if you notice the other things around you, it will gently come and sit on your shoulder." - Henry David Thoreau

Butterfly Gardens
It can be captivating to watch a butterfly! We find ourselves taking a moment away from the hectic demands of everyday life to enjoy the wonder of these delicate creatures. Planting a butterfly garden is a beautiful and colorful way to attract butterflies into your landscape!

An intentionally planned butterfly garden provides a safe place for these visitors. They can easily find food and water, take shelter, and reproduce. Strong butterfly populations also support the larger environment by attracting other insects that benefit the garden and providing food for animals, birds, and lizards that help control pests in the garden.


A sustainable butterfly garden should include vegetation that supports both adults and larvae; plants that provide shelter from strong temperatures, heavy rain, and predators; and a water source for the butterflies.

Remember these tips as you design your butterfly garden:
● Garden both in full sun and partial shade.
● Include plants that support larvae and adult butterflies.
● Select a variety of plants that bloom at different times so that the butterflies have a consistent food source.
● Use quality top soil to ensure plants and flowers are enriched.
● Include sweet smelling plants and/or herbs such as sedum and lavender.
● Arrange plants in groups as butterflies are more likely to land in a concentration of color instead of on a single plant.
● Choose plants of varying heights, colors, shapes, and sizes.
● Include a water feature - even a simple shallow dish with water and rocks will encourage butterflies to visit!


When planning for your butterfly garden, be sure to include several of the following plants: Black Eyed Susan, Butterfly Bush, Coreopsis, Fennel, Firebush, Gaillardia, Lantana, Milkweed, Pentas, Porterweed, Purple Passion Vine, Sage, and Sunflowers.

Happy planting!

Please email Kathy at kcg.pvr@gmail.com for any questions or gardening tips you would like to see in the future. For more information & ideas, visit our nursery in Ponte Vedra Beach! Kathy’s Creative Gardens & Nursery 196 N. Roscoe Blvd. 904-655-7373.

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