Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden
1800 Lakeside Ave.
Richmond, VA 23228
Lewis Ginter Garden website
HOURS: 9 am to 5 pm daily, house is open in May through mid-October
Each May, the Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden opens its Butterflies LIVE! indoor exhibit in the Conservatory. The butterfly exhibit is open May through mid-October and houses tropical butterflies. Come see butterflies released into the exhibit at 10 a.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Saturdays. Admission to the butterfly exhibit is included in the general admission to the garden.
In addition to the Butterflies LIVE! exhibit, the Garden has many butterfly attracting host and food plants on the grounds. You can see native butterflies and bees feeding on these throughout the gardens.
ACCESSIBILITY: wheelchair accessible
Norfolk Botanical Garden Butterfly House
6700 Azalea Garden Rd.
Norfolk, VA 23518
Norfolk Botanical Garden Butterfly House website
HOURS: 10 am – 7 pm.m Daily; mid-June to late September
Open-air enclosure is seasonal, so it’s only open in the summer through early fall. Inside the house, butterfly attracting plants that provide food, shelter, and act as host plants have been planted to line the walkway. The house is surrounded by a 2.5-acre butterfly garden full of nectar and host plants for butterflies and moths. A butterfly-shaped maze that covers a half-acre of the gardens is constructed out of pathways lined with butterfly food plants. Butterflies in this house are native and include gulf fritillaries, monarchs, buckeyes, red admirals, black swallowtails and more. See the list with photos here: http://norfolkbotanicalgarden.org/explore/all-gardens/bristow-butterfly-garden/butterflies/
At the end of September, guests can participate in tagging a Monarch butterfly and releasing it into the garden. This helps track the migration of Monarchs from the U.S. to Mexico.
ACCESSIBILITY: Unclear. The pathway is gravel crush that is somewhat compacted. Unsure about the path to the entrance of the house.
Flying Flowers Butterfly House
Beagle Ridge Herb Farm
1934 Matney Flats Rd
Wytheville, Virginia 24382
Flying Flowers website
Located on the property of Beagle Ridge Herb Farm, this open-air enclosure opens on Mother’s Day each year. Flying Flowers features native butterflies and the plants they need for food and to complete their life cycle. It was opened in 2009.
In the Fall, the staff tag the monarch butterflies before they are released for their journey south.
Guests can learn about the life cycle of butterflies, enjoy a program about butterflies, and even enjoy a Butterfly Tea. Only 10 visitors at a time are allowed in the butterfly house so as not to disrupt the butterflies.
In addition to the enclosure, Beagle Ridge Farm features 160 acres of native and non-native plants, hiking trails, and lots of fun.
Birthday parties are an option at the Farm as well as luncheons (which are three courses!).
ACCESSIBILITY: Unknown. The main path in the butterfly house is gravel and there is a special door to keep the butterflies from escaping (of unknown width).