CREATE YOUR OWN BUTTERFLY GARDEN
Read the story Can't Catch a Butterfly. Then, keep the butterfly feeling going all summer long by creating your very own butterfly garden. This project is a definite family affair. Your children will love to help you dig, plant, and make a fun home for those beautiful bugs! Take pictures of each "design" stage. This is a great activity to talk about all of the different steps needed in building a butterfly sanctuary. Be prepared for what's to come after you complete your garden oasis. Your kids will daily wait and watch with great anticipation for signs of wings & things!
TO GET STARTED:
- Pick a part of your yard that yields lots of sunlight during the day. Butterflies are cold-blooded insects and need sun to keep them warm.
- Clear out the area to get rid of grass. Create a rich soil environment for the plants.
- A variety of bright butterfly food is important. Butterflies feed on nectar so you need flowers that will bloom spring, summer, and fall. Butterfly migration takes place in the fall so this is an important time for late blooming plants. Butterflies love red, orange, yellow and purple flowers. Place the tall plants in the back and the shorter varieties in the front of your garden space. You might need to do some research before planting to find the best "butterfly" flowers in your area.
- Make sure not to use insecticides or pesticides on your plants. They will kill the butterflies!!!
- If you want caterpillars to come to your butterfly home than you have to plant milkweed. Caterpillars need to chew on leaves to become a butterfly. Milkweed will also be important if you want butterflies to lay eggs.
HERE IS A LIST OF EASY-TO-GROW PLANTS THAT BUTTERFLIES WILL LOVE
| Black-eyed Susan
| Butterfly Bush
| Shasta daisy
| Bee Balms
| Purple Coneflower
Butterflies enjoy basking in the sun on warm surfaces. Have a happy arrangement of big rocks, garden statues, and stepping stones for our flying friends. You can even assist your children in creating their own butterfly stepping stone! Go to your nearest craft store to purchase the cement kit.
Butterflies need water! Provide a wet sand or mud area for the butterflies to quench their thirst and draw essential nutrients. You can use an old bird bath, water fountain or any decorative container to make a special place for drinking.