The Wildlife charity ‘Butterfly Conservation’ have teamed up with B&Q, to help spread the word about butterfly friendly plants. When they asked if I’d like to be involved, and help support the project and promote butterfly conservation, I was so excited. Especially since it meant having our own caterpillars (from Gribbly Bugs) that would transform into butterflies. I knew Bailey would be fascinated, and that she would learn so much about nature through the process.
Our garden is a bit of a mess, at the moment. We have some raspberries, that were planted by the previous owner, but otherwise the rest of the garden is pretty bare, and has been untouched since we moved in last year. Eventually we want to re-landscape it all, so I have been reluctant to plant too much in the beds, because in a few years it will all have to come out. The brilliant thing about this butterfly garden though, is it’s all in pots and containers, which is perfect, because we can move them when we need to.
It’s really easy to pick plants that the butterflies love, and even if you just add a few pots to your current garden with some of these plants in, you’ll be helping look after these beautiful insects. Plus if the butterflies love them so will the bees, and it’s so important to think about providing flowers that will be good for all pollinators in general.
Since their natural habitats are being destroyed, butterflies and bees are on the decline, and they play a vital role in the pollination of plants and the production of crops. Therefore we need to provide nectar rich plants for them in our gardens.
We had so much fun planting up our flowers; Cosmos, Verbena, French Marigold, English Lavender, Nepeta, Lavender, Thyme, Scabious, Salvia, Agastache, Budleia, Mint, Cape Mallow (see first photograph clockwise from top left).
Don’t forget to use peat free compost. Peat is being extracted far faster than it’s being replaced, and when the peat is removed, the wildlife that depends on it suffers.
Bailey is so enthusiastic about helping and wants to do it all; dig the hole, take the plant out, but the part she enjoys the most is of course the watering. She can fill the watering can up from the water butt all by herself and this pleases her greatly. I love to see her so curious about the wildlife too. She loves to find a snail friend, and is bit braver about handling the slugs and the worms when she is wearing her little gardening gloves.
The five caterpillars that we were sent, have been eating lots, and getting bigger by the day. Bailey has been checking on them regularly. The caterpillars have been named, and re-named on a daily basis. Now they are chrysalises, and we have to wait patiently for them to do their magical transformation into butterflies (which takes about 10 days).
We are all very excited in our household and cannot wait to see what happens. I’ll be back with an update later in the Summer when all the chrysalises have turned into butterflies and we release them into the garden.
We are also going to download a butterfly chart and join in with the ‘Big Butterfly Count’ to see how many we can spot over the Summer. If you would like to join in too, you can find more information and get your copy here.
I do hope you’ll choose a few plants that the butterflies love to add to your outside space. After all, they are all really beautiful to look at, and there’s something wonderful about sitting in a garden that is buzzing with the sounds of nature.
This post is in partnership with B&Q but all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the posts that help make this blog possible.