A good butterfly garden includes both flowers for the butterflies to
extract nectar from and host plants for the caterpillars to eat.
Host plants include everlasting for the Vanessa butterflies, lupine for
the Sulphurs and Silvery Blues, spirea for Spring Azures, violets for
Perennials are usually better than annuals. Some of the most successful
are phlox, Anthemis, black eyed Susan, Monarda, Centaurea, Joe Pye weed
and most mints.
The big yellow and black Tiger Swallowtail likes to nectar on blackberry
blossoms but most people don’t want blackberries in their gardens;
Hesperis matronalis (sweet rocket) is a good substitute and other
species of butterflies enjoy it as well.
Some of the host plants on which butterflies lay eggs, such as hops,
plantain, stinging nettle and burdock are considered invasive weeds.
However, if you really like butterflies you may want to grow some of
these at the back of your garden.
Most culinary herbs are attractive to butterflies and they take nectar
from chives, oregano, rosemary, feverfew, etc. The large Black
Swallowtail found in the Montréal area is called “Persil” (parsley)
because it lays eggs on parsley.
All the native plants that butterflies use also have traditional
medicinal uses. Butterflies also take nectar from the plants we use to
Butterfly Gardens by Mike MacDonald
- Jardin des papillons—Parc la Gabelle, St-Etienne-des-Gres PQ
- Spirit Garden—St. Norbert Arts Centre, Winnipeg MB
- Pembina Highway Bridge on the La Salle River, St. Norbert MB
- Roof Garden—The Winnipeg Art Gallery
- Butterfly Garden—Gage Park, Hamilton ON
- Marian Garden—St. Norbert Arts Centre, Winnipeg MB
- Butterfly Garden—Walter Phillips Gallery, Banff AB
- Butterfly Garden—Edmonton Art Gallery, Edmonton AB
- Butterfly Garden—St. Norbert Arts and Cultural Centre, Winnipeg MB
- Cyber Garden—St. Norbert Arts and Cultural Centre, Winnipeg MB
- Jardin des papillons—Parc Rotary Harricana, Amos PQ
- Butterfly Garden—Mount Saint Vincent Gallery, Halifax NS
- Butterfly Garden—Ottawa Art Gallery, Ottawa ON
- Butterfly Roof Garden—Oboro Gallery, Montreal PQ
- Le Centre d’histoire et d’archeologie de la Metabetchouane, Desbien, PQ
- Native to America—Presentation House, North Vancouver BC
- Butterfly Garden—Annapolis Royal NS
- Native Plants Garden—Presentation House, North Vancouver BC
- Jardin des papillons—Est Nord Est, St-Jean-Port-Joli PQ
- Acorn, John (1993). Butterflies of Alberta, Lone Pine Publishing, Edmonton.
- Ferguson, D.C. (1953). The Lepidoptera of Nova Scotia, N.S. Museum of Natural History, Halifax.
- Hooper, W.J. (1973). Butterflies of Saskatchewan: a Field Guide, Museum of Natural History, Saskatchewan Department of Natural Resources, Regina.
- Jackson, B.S. (1976). Butterflies of Oxen Pond Botanic Park, Memorial University, St. John’s.
- Klassen, P., A.R. Westwood, W.B. Preston & W.B. McKillop (1989). The Butterflies of Manitoba, Manitoba Museum of Man and Nature, Winnipeg.
- Morris, R.F. (1980). Butterflies and Moths of Newfoundland and Labrador, Agriculture Canada, Ottawa.
- Pyle, M.R. (1981). National Audobon Society Field Guide to North American Butterflies, Knopf, New York.
- Stokes, D., L. Stokes & E. Williams (1991). The Butterfly Book, Little, Brown & Co., Boston.
- Veilleux, C. & B. Provost (1986). Les Papillons du Québec, Les Editions de l’homme, Montréal.