My new butterfly garden

Tue. May. 30, 2017

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  My new butterfly garden

I had the opportunity to speak to a group of enthusiastic gardeners about pollinators and plants.  I already had pollinator friendly plants but I really wanted to take it a step further.  My day job is a News Director for a radio station.  I get lots of emails, one was from my local Soil and Water Conservation District wanting me to mention they had raingarden and butterfly garden plants for sale.  I jumped all over it!

I bought 48 native plants specifically packaged together to attract butterflies for $60!  That’s a bargain!  That was back in April. I had already decided they were going on the corner of my lot.  I have pictures on garden bite dot com.  The first step was to dig up the sod.

 Finally, a beautiful day arrived.  I had the plants, the soil wasn’t soggy and sunshine at my back.  When you get the plants, there’s no instructions as to how far apart to plant them, no height or bloom time, just the name of the plant.

So I did look them up and planted the tallest, Ironweed and New England Aster around the street sign pole and then worked out from there, as most of the other plants are somewhere between 1 and 3 feet tall.

I was questioning my placements as I laid the plants out – 4 plants each of 12 varieties!  Then I realized, it’s a NATIVE wildflower garden – MY placement isn’t nearly as important as I think!  The full sun spot will take care of them and they’ll bring butterflies to my landscape!

Here’s the list with links to what the plants look like:

Butterfly Weed – bushy – grows 1.5 to 2 feet tall – orange

Narrow-leaf Coneflower – grows 1 to 2 feet – lt purple

Black-eyed Susan – grows 1 to 3 feet – yellow

Purple Prairie Clover – grows 1 to 3 feet

Smooth Aster – grows 1 to 3 feet – lt purple

Sky Blue Aster – grows 1 to 3 feet

Ironweed – grows 3 to 6 feet – purple

Early Sunflower –  blooms June thru Sept.

Bergamot – grows 2 to 4 feet – lt purple

Hoary Vervain – grows 1 to 3 feet – purple

New England Aster – grows 3 to 7 feet – purple – late flowering

Rough Blazing Star – grows 1 to 4 feet – purple – late flowering

Purple prairie clover

I can’t wait!!!!  Ahh, the gardener’s dilemma – PATIENCE!  😉   This garden will take time, but once established, there’s nothing to do but watch the show….  and a little cleanup here and there!

Early Sunflower