Gardening with and for Wildlife part 6-Critters you might not have thought about

Butterfly mist #2 adj 7-22-11

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.  The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”          2Corinthians 5:17 ESV

Other ‘critters’ that you might not have thought about are butterflies and moths

Butterfly on Bee Balm 8-13-13 #2v

Swallowtail Butterly on Bee Balm

Butterfly-Pink Edged Sulphur on Liatris 8-6-11 cropped

Pink Edged Sulphur on Liatris

Butterfly-Admrial, on highbush cranberry 6-4-12

Admiral on Highbush Cranberry

Butterfly on marigold 7-29-13 #2

Butterfly on French Marigold

Butterfly on Crimson Scabious 6-21-12 #1 adj

Butterfly on Crimson Scabious

Hummingbird Clearwing Moth (Hemaris thysbe) 8-7-11 #1 cropped adj

Yep…this is a Hummingbird Clearwing Moth!  He also likes the Bee Balm.

The following is some helpful information for butterflies from National Wildlife Federation:

Plant type and color is important – Adult butterflies are attracted to red, yellow, orange, pink and purple blossoms that are flat-topped or clustered and have short flower tubes.

Plant good nectar sources in the sun – Your key butterfly nectar source plants should receive full sun from mid-morning to mid-afternoon. Butterfly adults generally feed only in the sun. If sun is limited in your landscape, try adding butterfly nectar sources to the vegetable garden.

Plant for continuous bloom – Butterflies need nectar throughout the adult phase of their life span. Try to plant so that when one plant stops blooming, another begins.

Say no to insecticides – Insecticides such as malathion, Sevin, and diazinon are marketed to kill insects. Don’t use these materials in or near the butterfly garden or better, anywhere on your property. Even “benign” insecticides, such as Bacillus thuringiensis, are lethal to butterflies (while caterpillars).

 Feed butterfly caterpillars – If you don’t “grow” caterpillars, there will be no adults. Bringing caterpillar foods into your garden can greatly increase your chances of attracting unusual and uncommon butterflies, while giving you yet another reason to plant an increasing variety of native plants. In many cases, caterpillars of a species feed on only a very limited variety of plants. Most butterfly caterpillars never cause the leaf damage we associate with some moth caterpillars such as bagworms, tent caterpillars, or gypsy moths.

Provide a place for butterflies to rest – Butterflies need sun for orientation and to warm their wings for flight. Place flat stones in your garden to provide space for butterflies to rest and bask in the sun.

Give them a place for puddling – Butterflies often congregate on wet sand and mud to partake in “puddling,” drinking water and extracting minerals from damp puddles. Place coarse sand in a shallow pan and then insert the pan in the soil of your habitat. Make sure to keep the sand moist.

 Common Butterflies and the Plants Their Caterpillars Eat

 Acmon Blue – buckwheat, lupines, milkvetch

American Painted Lady – cudweed, everlast

Baird’s Swallowtail – dragon sagebrush

Black Swallowtail – parsley, dill, fennel, common rue

Coral Hairstreak – wild black cherry, American and chickasaw plum, black chokeberry

Dun Skipper – sedges, grasses including purpletop

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail – wild black cherry, ash, tulip tree, willow, sweetbay, basswood

Giant Swallowtail – prickly ash, citrus, common rue, hoptree, gas plant, torchwood

Gray Comma – gooseberry, azalea, elm

Great Purple Hairstreak – mistletoe

Gulf Fritillary – maypops, other passion vines

Henry’s Elfin – redbud, dahoon and yaupon hollies, maple-leaved viburnum, blueberries

Monarch – milkweeds

Painted Lady (Cosmopolite) – thistles, mallows, nievitas, yellow fiddleneck

Pygmy Blue – saltbush, lamb’s quarters, pigweed

Red Admiral/White Admiral – wild cherries, black oaks, aspens, yellow and black birch

Silver-Spotted Skipper – locusts, wisteria, other legumes

Spicebush Swallowtail – sassafras, spicebush

Sulphurs – clover, peas, vetch, alfalfa, asters

Variegated Fritillary – passion flower, maypop, violets, stonecrop, purslane

Viceroy – willows, cottonwood, aspen

Western Tailed Blue – vetches, milkvetches

Western Tiger Swallowtail – willow, plum, alder, sycamore, hoptree, ash

Woodland Skipper – grasses

Zebra Swallowtail – pawpaw                                                                                           NWF

Bees and wasps…

Bee on Oregano 7-30-13v

Bee on oregano flower

Bumble Bee in chives

Bee on chives


Long-tailed wasp on tree

Other insects, bugs and spiders

Bug in Daylily 7-15-13v

Some kind of bug on Daylily

Fork-tailed bush Katydid 8-7-11 #10 sharper

I think this is a fork-tailed bush katydid

stick bug 9-29-12 #3 filter

Stick bug

Spider on Daylily 'Stella D'oro' close-up 2009

Spider on Daylily

Spider on Dianthus 5-30-12 cropped

Spider on Dianthus (Pinks)


Daylily frog romance 7-19-12

Frog pair-date night on a Daylily 😉

frog close-up green frog on hollyhock leaf 6-2010 cropped

Frog on Hollyhock leaf

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