Gardening for butterflies and other pollinators was one of the most common responses In a survey Growing a Greener World sent out to our email subscribers, as one of their most important gardening goals in the upcoming year. Many responded that they planned on creating a butterfly or pollinator garden soon and would like more information on how to attract and protect them.
Additionally, many people wanted to know more about how to attract and raise monarchs specifically.
The image on the homepage of our website for this episode shows one of the most-loved and most threatened butterflies – the monarch. The image also shows one of the most problematic plants that butterflies are attracted to (along with many other pollinators). It’s buddleia, or commonly known as butterfly bush. While it is indeed beautiful and commonly found in many home landscapes, it is now considered highly invasive in many parts of the country.
Based on those replies we created this episode. However, we can only skim the surface in what amounts to about 22 minutes of information. Fortunately, there is a wealth of good information online and in books. We were fortunate to have several knowledgeable experts work with us during the creation of this show. One was Kylee Baumle. Her newly released book; The Monarch – Saving Our Most-Loved Butterfly is a great resource to learn more about monarchs and their plight. You can order it in the link below.
Thanks also to Dennis Krusac, Endangered Species Specialist with the U.S Forest Service, Jackie Belwood, Ph.D. – Georgia Highlands College, Kim Pegram, Ph.D., Insect Ecologist Specialist – Desert Botanical Garden and Krista, Felicity and Faith Ferguson for the great home video segment.
You may also want to watch our episodes on:
Episode 620 – Bringing Nature Home with Doug Tallamy
Episode 610 – Bringing Native Bees Back
Episode 604 – Creating Certified Wildlife Habitats
Episode 526 – Birds and Blooms; A Gardener’s Guide to Backyard Birding
About the raised bed DIY project
The blocks and composite boards that Joe used in the DIY raised bed project in this show can be purchased at Home Depot (and likely Lowes, etc.). Although we did not personally purchase them, we were told the supplies came from there.
American Beauties Native Plants – A good line of native plants selected for each growing region of the country
Kylee Baumle’s book: The Monarch; Saving Our Most-Loved Butterfly
The Xerces Society book: Gardening for Butterflies (an excellent and trusted resource we have used multiple times in researching information for this episode and others)
The Xerces Society Guide: Attracting Native Pollinators – Protecting North America’s Bees and Butterflies (another great resource from a trusted source we have used often for reference)
The Xerces Society Pollinator-friendly plant lists for each region (The Xerces Society is a great one-stop go-too resource for information related to beneficial insects and pollinators)
Attracting Butterflies and the plants their caterpillars need (from National Wildlife Federation)
Native Plants to Attract Butterflies – The Missouri Botanical Garden
Creating a Butterfly Garden – University of Minnesota Extension
Desert Botanical Garden spring butterfly exhibit