How to attract more butterflies
Few things are more beautiful on planet Earth than butterflies. They kind of encapsulate all the things that are soft and gentle about our world. For this and many other reasons, people love to have them fluttering around their yards and gardens.
What many people don’t realize is that you can do specific things to encourage more butterflies to visit on a regular basis. These simple tips are not rocket science.
They focus on the basics of nature….food, shelter, water. Here are some tips to ensure you enjoy the beauty of the butterfly too:
Consider all the life cycles
Butterflies are not always beautiful, winged insects that are gently fluttering around your home. They also go through stages as caterpillars, pupa and egg. Learning about the cycles butterflies go through helps you to understand what might be attractive to them.
Butterflies are quite interesting and not all butterflies live the same lifestyle or eat the same things. Learn all you can and you will be more equipped to attract new and interesting species.
Have plenty of host plants
Without the right types of plants, you have very little chance of having butterflies around your property. You might have one pass through on occasion but generally speaking, they will not hang around.
Milkweed is generally a good plant to start with but butterflies feed on different plants for different species. As such, you have to keep a nice variation of plants in your garden or around your home.
Learning the right plants is a life long adventure as there are so many species of butterflies. Start with milkweed plants and then go from there.
Make sure you plant nectar plants that bloom at differing times
Butterflies love nectar but they do not all arrive and hang out at the same times. Plant your nectar plants so that they bloom at different stages where possible and you will always have something to interest them.
Vary the sizes of the plants
Not all butterflies are the same size and the little guys need some food too. Butterflies have what is called a proboscises and it is essentially like a straw or tongue. This allows them to get inside to the nectar.
Small butterflies need shorter plants and blooms and larger ones like the deeper. Keeping a variation is a good thing to keep the butterflies coming.
Make sure you limit the shade
Butterflies love the sun because it keeps the plants providing the things they need. Shade is a bad thing for butterflies.
Pesticides will kill a number of problematic pests but they will kill off the butterflies too. They are extremely susceptible to them and will die from even the weakest ones on the market. Find some other way to contain and fight off insect problems.
What other tricks do you know that attracts butterflies to your property?