turdacres


monarchs in the garden
July 25, 2010, 7:53 am
Filed under: bees, favorite plants, gardening | Tags: , , ,

hold still little buddy

I am always excited to see monarch butterflies. They remind me of being a kid–didn’t everyone learn about monarchs back in the day? I don’t see them so much anymore.

The other morning I was out admiring the wavy plot of purple flowers out back–lots of anise hyssop in bloom–and a monarch came in for a snack. They’re so flittery. It swooped and dodged, and was generally very difficult to capture with the camera. The other butterflies out there were much more amenable to getting their pictures taken, but the monarch not so much.

hey i'm pretty too--take my picture!

And while I was trying to get a good shot of the monarch, another monarch arrived–and the two of them chased each other around swooping way up and coming back around the garden. They were just having fun, I swear!

I’ve been planting up a butterfly feast–lots of anise hyssop, purple coneflowers, verbena bonariensis. This year I’ve added some swamp milkweed and butterfly weed. The hyssop is so tall –it’s year three–and it’s over my head! The bumblebees love it. There’s a bee balm patch that is also in bloom now–I didn’t plant it but it’s hanging in there, and I hope it takes off a bit more.

bee balm along the driveway

I’m busy planting all these pollinator friendly plants around, and it seems to be working. There are so many butterflies and bees. The honey bees don’t seem to flock to these plants though. I’m planting some things specially for them too.

I came across this cool project–people can register their monarch friendly gardens as part of a monarch waystation project. It’s neat to think of all of these little plots across the map–little points of refuge for the road weary travellers.

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