Do you want to encourage beautiful butterflies to congregate in your outdoor space? Luring these lovely creatures to your yard is easier than you think, and you can do it with just a few simple changes to your landscape. Learn how to attract butterflies to your yard so you can support their life cycles and enjoy their beauty as well.
First of all, if you want to attract butterflies, you should probably discourage the things that eat butterflies from assembling in your outdoor space. Birds view butterflies as a tasty snack, so if you have bird-attracting elements like bird feeders or bird baths in the same space as your butterfly-luring flowers, you're going to have a lot of predator and prey drama going on. Eventually, the butterflies will stay away for fear of being eaten.
If you don't want to give up the songbirds that flock to your bird feeder or birdbath, at least create separate zones for each type of creature. Perhaps a corner of the backyard could be for the birds, while the front yard caters to butterflies.
Plant Flowers that Butterflies Love
This one's a no-brainer, because if you want to attract butterflies, you need to offer them a food source. For most butterflies, that food source is flowers, like zinnias, asters, nasturtium, shasta daisies, verbena, stonecrop, lupines, and hollyhocks, among dozens of others. If you're interested in luring a particular type of butterfly, simply research the plants that it enjoys and install those in your flowerbeds. Of course, you'll need to check and make sure that the type of butterfly you want is actually native to your area.
Offer Water Sources
You don't want a lot of pooled water in your backyard, because that can result in mosquitoes breeding; but you need a couple of small puddling sites where the butterflies can get water. They need to drink, and they are best served with small pools of water or areas of wet sand. You can install a small dish, sunk into the ground with its edge level with the soil, and fill that container with sand. Wet the sand thoroughly every day to provide moisture for butterflies.
Provide Leaf Cover During Winter
Did you know that some caterpillars and butterflies, as well as moths, actually overwinter in the autumn leaf litter? They hide until spring comes and then emerge. If you want to support every stage of their life cycle, allow some fallen leaves to stay in place in or around your flowerbeds, so the tiny creatures can hunker down until warm weather arrives.
Pesticides will kill not only the harmful pests, but insects such as butterflies, too. If possible, avoid all chemicals and pesticides, or opt for natural ones that are less toxic. Sometimes you can even introduce predator insects that will eliminate the pest bugs without harming your butterfly guests.
To purchase the soil or decorative rocks that you need to craft attractive areas for butterflies, visit the Kurtz Bros website. You can also call us with any questions you may have about the butterflies' place in the environment of your backyard.