Many of the flowering plants I grow in my yard attract butterflies by providing food for them or their larvae. It always makes me smile to see a butterfly flitting by or resting on a bloom.
My neighbors probably think I’m crazy when they hear me say “hello, beautiful” to the butterflies, but they always seem like fancy ladies visiting my garden. I enjoy seeing them and I hope to attract more each year.
These are photos of some of the visitors, both moths and butterflies, to my gardens over the last couple of years. I have a hard time capture some of them – they just won’t sit still! Hope you enjoy the photos. If you’d like to learn about some of the plants that attract butterflies and provide food/structure for their larvae, visit this post: Food plants for butterflies and caterpillars.
This stunning butterfly is a Gulf Fritillary. I plant the purple passionflower vines just to feed the larvae of this beauty. The caterpillars stripped the passionflower clean this year, but I ended up with several butterflies in the garden as a result. Is it a good trade off? I think so.
This Spicebush Swallowtail Butterfly was just emerging from its cocoon when I discovered it. Its wings weren’t quite dry, so it took a while before it flew off.
This Tiger Swallowtail was an early spring visitor to my garden. After a cold winter, I was so happy to see her.
This little guy decided to land on the fabric I use to protect my tomatoes from the birds. I’ve seen several around the yard since that time.
While skippers might not be as showy as some of the other butterflies, they are fun to watch as they flit from one place to another. This skipper was feeding on the butterfly bush that had grown over 9 feet tall.
I came home one day to find this Common Wood Nymph sitting on the side of the house. He’s pretty small, but interesting.
Here’s another type of skipper feeding on the salvia.
This little caterpillar means a monarch will soon be on its way. I found it feeding on the milkweed I have in the garden.