While working in my gardens the past two weeks, I’ve been visited by a gorgeous Monarch butterfly quite a few times. She (I assume she’s a she) seems to love my flowering mint plants that she’s sharing with the bees. The bright orange beauty seems to flirt with me a bit, maybe telling me it’s okay that I’m on “her” turf. Common folklore compares their metamorphosis to transformation in our own lives.
Aside from their magic, the butterfly does a great job pollinating flowers as it goes from plant to plant. While it drinks nectar to survive, it gathers pollen on its legs and carries it on to the next plant. This enables your flowering plants, trees and vegetables to bear fruit and make new seeds. It’s nature’s way of reproduction. Those pesty white aphids hiding on your plants are eaten up by their visits.
How can you attract butterflies to your yard and gardens? Using pesticides and chemicals on your plants is a sure way to keep butterflies away. If you do fertilize, always use an organic feed or home made compost. Butterflies love purple coneflower, butterfly bush and bee balm, but don’t be surprised if you see them drinking from petunias or marigolds. Invite them with purples, pinks and whites. And enjoy their beauty!