Friday, June 25, 2010

Milkweed for butterflies

I was lucky.

An Eastern Tiger Swallowtail on Asclepias tuberosa, otherwise known as...butterfly milkweed.

On my way out of the BBG yesterday, post a nice hot day of deadheading (it was really nice, once a plateau of hotness had been reached), I swung into the Native Garden, to see what had been happening in the last week. I'm so glad I did. Pictures will follow. And then I saw the brilliant orange of the milkweed, with the butterfly fluttering down as I took the picture. It was perfectly quiet, no one there, just the orange milkweed, the butterfly, the tall trees, me.


  1. I have been growing milkweeds -Asclepias fruiticosus (now Gomphostigma fruiticosus) for a couple of years to attract our African Monarch butterfly - Danaus Chrysippus. They are the most beautiful butterflies and the caterpillars are handsome too - yellow stipes interspersed with black stripes with long black antler-like feelers. Very distinctive. Their pupae are also extremely attractive. In my garden they are short, fat, smooth and green, with a stripe of brilliant shiny gold spots. They hang like jewels on the underside of the leaves and stems of the host plant. The caterpillars also eat the stems of Stapelias, Orbeas and Heurnias which I collect. So during the summer I spend quite a lot of time removing the caterpillars from these plants and relocating them to the Asclepiad plants before they do too much damage.

  2. That is so pretty! Love the butterfly.

  3. Stunning, simply stunning...


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