Turn your garden into a paradise for butterflies with these simple steps. Try to focus on attracting some of the native ones to your area, they will be easier to attract and will likely live longer than any exotic species in the wrong environment.

Feed The Caterpillars

Caterpillars are the first stage of a butterflies life so in order to create a home for butterflies, you need to create a home for and feed the caterpillars. Most people don’t want caterpillars in their garden as they eat up the leaves of plants and flowers. Plant some thick greens like milkweed to provide food for the caterpillars and they will leave the other plants and flowers alone.

feed the caterpillars

Caterpillar by coniferconifer

Feed The Butterflies

Butterflies eat nectar from flowers, plant lots of nectar producing flowers in sunny locations around your garden. They especially love bright colours like red, orange, yellow and purple. Try to stagger the planting of your flowers or choose a wide variety of flowers so that there is at least one bed of flowers in bloom at all times. Follow this link to find out what plants are best for which butterflies.

They also love fruit. Put out peels, cores and slices of fruit in an open location for them to feed on.

Avoid Pesticides

This may be an obvious one but you should avoid pesticides and insecticides as far as possible. They are usually not selective and kill off a broad range of insects and their young. If you are trying to get rid of a particular pest, try to research natural methods.

Create A Puddling Area

Butterflies love a puddling area in order to congregate. This only needs to be a shallow pan with some course sand which is kept moist. Butterflies will congregate in this area on the sand.

Do you have any tips and tricks for attracting them to your garden? Let us know in the comments section below.

Cover Image: Butterfly by Bill Staney. All images in this post are used under CC BY 2.0