Friday, July 24, 2009

A seasonal butterfly house

The Western North Carolina Nature Center has a lovely small seasonal butterfly house that I hadn't visited before. Displaying native butterflies (monarchs, gulf fritillaries, painted ladies, buckeyes, sulfurs, giant swallowtails, and others), it's a simple, but very effective display.

A hoop house, covered with black mesh, entering and exiting through double-screen doors is the basic set-up: inexpensive and nice. Raised beds support a variety of nectar plants and many other donated plants creating a nice border mix.

This monarch butterfly benefited from a purple coneflower inflorescence.

An outdoor butterfly garden bed completes the display. Great fun, indeed.

We'll be breaking ground in a couple of weeks for a new Butterfly Garden installation at the Botanical Garden where I work. We're excited about adding lots of host plants for butterfly caterpillars in addition to the nectar plants!

6 comments:

  1. I look forward to seeing it. I will be there in a year and a few months.

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  2. That is exciting! Butterfly houses are such places to spend a few hours! gail

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  3. A great idea, this seasonal butterfly house...
    But I must say that this year, I don't need a butterfly house in my garden. Butterflies are so abundant this year here in Flanders... Yesterday I was taking pictures, and at a certain moment I wasn't able to have only one ore two butterflies on one screen. There were simply to much of them on my Hemp Agrimony. (I even have a picture of 8 butterflies on one flower head.)

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  4. What a great idea...

    But this year, butterflies are so abundant here in my garden, that I don't need a butterfly house. (Yesterday it wasn't possible to make a picture of my Hemp Agrimony with only one ore two butterflies. There simply were to many of them.)

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  5. Certainly, butterflies visiting plants in our gardens are always the best!

    All we need to do (as gardeners) is provide LOTS of nectar-producing plants, in addition to whatever host-plants that we have room for (in our gardens).

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  6. Anne,
    How wonderful to have so many butterflies this year!

    We've had a 'normal' year here so far, but nothing like you describe.

    Rob (in Great Britain) reported a lack of bumblebees (and I think butterflies, too) this spring and summer.

    Population fluctuations are so dependent on seasonal weather patterns, which are changing, to be sure.

    Lisa

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Please share your thoughts with me. I always enjoy hearing from fellow gardeners and nature observers of all sorts, as well as whomever else drops by.

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