Butterfly Gardening


Butterfly gardening is a popular past-time in Florida. One easy-to-grow plant that provides both caterpillar food and nectar for the adult butterfly is the butterfly weed or Asclepias. Monarch butterflies are regular visitors to this low-maintenance plant. Also sometimes called milkweed for the milky sap that escapes when stems or leaves are bruised, this colorful plant tolerates many site conditions but prefers the sunny and rather dry soils. Occasionally visited by hummingbirds, it is a fast grower, reaching a mature height at 3-4 feet quickly while producing brightly colored flowers from April through September. An added bonus is that butterfly weed re-seeds readily, so sharing with friends or adding to other parts of the garden is easy and inexpensive. 
butterflyweed/milkweed
seed pod of butterflyweed/ milkweed