Starting a butterfly garden, butterfly garden plants and attracting butterflies to the garden is one of my favorite past times, and something that started accidentally here at Seven Oaks and sort of took on a life of its own. Last night was my final Master Gardening program class, and each student had to present on a topic of his or her choice. I presented on how to start a butterfly garden. Some Facebook friends were interested in the topic, so I made my presentation into a PDF and am adding it to the Free Gardening Resources library I’ve started here on the blog. I’ll also link to it below and write articles on it since it seemed to be of interest. We had some really stand out presentations last night, and I especially loved the presentations on aspects of gardening with children. One lady is as obsessed with sunflowers as I am; who knew? Another lady ran a fantastic program at her day care center, teaching the small children under her care how to grow vegetables, and then inviting them into the kitchen with her to cook and can them. The pictures of the pre-school children in the vegetable garden grinning as they held up beans and tomatoes were priceless.
My presentation on Starting a Butterfly Garden includes both the PowerPoint slides I used and the speaker’s notes, which I hope illustrate the concept adequately. As I mentioned, I started a butterfly garden by accident. I’d always wanted one but those plans in magazines are intimidating. Half the time, the plants recommended in the article aren’t available at the garden center, and I forget the list when I go, so the garden never gets built. The solution that I chose for Seven Oaks was a series of “kits.” Each kit was ordered online from a catalog and included a plan and the plants. It is sort of like paint-by-numbers gardening. Over the past four years, I’ve added more plants to attract and support butterflies in the garden solely because I love watching the colorful insects play among the flowers. Most of the butterfly garden plants bloom profusely and are tough as nails, surviving our poor soil and hot, dry summers with aplomb. You can’t ask for more than that.
The presentation is saved as an Adobe Acrobat file, so it should open on most computers.
Please enjoy: Starting a Butterfly Garden.
Jeanne Grunert is a certified Virginia Master Gardener and the author of several gardening books. Her garden articles, photographs, and interviews have been featured in The Herb Companion, Virginia Gardener, and Cultivate, the magazine of the National Farm Bureau. She is the founder of The Christian Herbalists group and a popular local lecturer on culinary herbs and herbs for health, raised bed gardening, and horticulture therapy.