Create a butterfly sanctuary in your backyard

Written by Gene Caballero on September 29, 2014

Photograph of a female Monarch Butterfly en ( ...

Having a backyard can be a wonderful thing when you landscape it in such a way that it helps the local environment, rather than hinders it. There are many ways that you can aid your local environment with your backyard, and one of the most unique ways is with a butterfly sanctuary. A butterfly sanctuary is a wonderful way to turn your backyard into a paradise for a variety of species of butterflies. It is also a great way to make your backyard unique, and a pleasure to stare at for hours.

It is also very important that you look at putting a butterfly sanctuary in your backyard because butterfly species around the world are dying due to loss of habitat and pesticides used to kill other insects.

You don’t have to transform your entire backyard to make a butterfly sanctuary. It can happen with just a few plants, a windbreak, some warmth from the sun and a bit of shallow water for the butterflies to drink from.

One of the best plants to put in your backyard is milkweed. Milkweed is a host plant for monarch butterflies, and the only type of plant that their caterpillars like to consume. Monarchs will want to place their eggs in the plant, and they will be drawn to the milkweed in your yard in the spring because of its sweet smell. Milkweed is actually critical to the survival of the monarch butterfly.

Other popular plants to attract butterflies to your garden include the Butterfly Bush, Salvias, Mexican Sunflower, Echinacea and California Buckwheat.

It is important that you provide shelter from the wind and that is why bushy plants are very important. The wind will keep butterflies away from your garden, and you don’t want that.

Sunlight is important because butterflies like to sit in the sun, warming their wings. Water must be shallow, so they can sip from the puddles.

One thing to note is that milkweed is poisonous to humans, and if you have children in your home, you should maybe choose not to plant milkweed in your yard. The reason that milkweed is used by Monarchs is because the substance that they eat from milkweed, makes them toxic to birds.

Creating a butterfly sanctuary in your home can be as easy as some plants, a bit of water, sunlight and a break from the wind.

Learn more about changing your backyard with a professional landscaper.

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