MadSci Network: Environment & Ecology

Re: What flowers attract butterflies?

Date: Sat Mar 18 11:35:04 2000
Posted By: Richard Kingsley, Science teacher
Area of science: Environment & Ecology
ID: 951445942.En

Hi Sarah,

Planting flowers for butterflies and watching them flying around your garden is great fun. You can also help local conservation and natural history clubs by recording the butterflies that you see. Watching butterflies is a good way to learn about insects and you will become an expert in no time. I would also consider planting flowers for hummingbirds ( a way cool bird!).

To get you started, here is a list of plants that I have put together and some websites to look at. Good luck!

Common name - scientific name


Butterfly bush - Buddleia davidii
Fountain butterfly bush - Buddleia alternifolia
Lilac - Syringa vulgaris
Lantanas - Lantana sp
Goldenflame - Bumalda spiraea
Beautybush - Kolkwitzia amabilis


Mexican feathergrass - Stipa tenuissima
Quaking grass - Briza media
Moor grass - Molinia caerulia

Perennial Flowers

Butterfly weed - Asclepias tuberosa
Purple coneflower - Echinacea purpurea
Wallflower - Erisimum linifolium
Sea Pink - Armeria maritima
Shasta Daisies - Chrysanthemum x Superbum
Bee Balm - Monarda didyma

Annual Flowers

Ageratum - Ageratum houstonianum
China Pink - Dianthus chinensis
Lobelia - Lobelia erinus (probably prefers partial shade in OK)
Sweet Alyssum - Lobularia maritima
Flowering Tobacco - Nicotiana sp
Verbena - Verbena x hybrida
Common Cosmos - Cosmos bipinnatus

Try these sites for more information:

University of Kentucky - Insect Department

Univer sity of Colorado - Creating a butterfly garden

Butterfly Gardening

Butterfly Gardening by Melany

Butterfly plants

Hummingbird and Butterfly gardening

Vera Lynn's Garden Pages (excellent site!!!!)

Children's Museum of Indianopolis

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