Pollinator gardening
And what could be better? A whole flower bed planted to attract bees, butterflies and other pollinators.
There are many perennial plants that the butterfly will love. Orange milkweed foliage provides food for
the monarch butterfly in spring. Liatris, lavender, asters, echinacea (coneflower) to name a few, but to
have all season blooms add annuals amongst them. Some suggestions would be zinnia, alyssum, cosmos,
lantana, salvia (a personal favourite) and of course petunia. Single flowers, the ones with one ring of
petals around the centre, provide more nectar and pollen than double flowers. If using perennials be
sure they are zoned for your climate. Also, include plants of various heights to add interest. Butterflies,
bees and pollinators need some refuge also, so an area of your yard ‘gone wild’ with grass, twigs, leaves
etc will suit them just fine. Different pollinators prefer various flower shapes too so keep that in mind
also when choosing your plants. And don’t forget about mud puddles! Butterflies will gather around
puddles for added minerals. If you don’t have them occurring naturally in your yard you may want to
create your own. Just a shallow basin to catch rain or mist from your garden hose and you’re all set! You
have a butterfly paradise!!