Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Butterfly Garden Notes, May 28 - May 29, 2017

This weekend I saw a Mourning Cloak (Nymphalis antiopa) in my butterfly garden.  It spent most of its time nectaring on the butterfly bush (Buddleja davidii).  It arrived around 11 am and stayed for several hours.  A male Monarch has been showing up around 10 or 10:30 am for the past several days.  I can’t help but wonder if he was born in my garden.  He'll come and go throughout the day and stays until late afternoon.
I checked the milkweed in the front of the house and on patio and all plants are loaded with monarch eggs.  There were at least six new monarch caterpillars on the patio milkweed and I'm sure there are caterpillars in the front garden, although since those plants aren't high up on shelves, they're harder to spot unless I go around turning the leaves over.  
A Gulf Fritillary was spotted fluttering around the zinnia although I wasn't able to get a photograph.  As usual the skippers were plentiful and also a few dusky wings came by for a bite to eat.

May 28, 2017
Mourning Cloak

 Male Monarch
 Fiery Skipper
 Funereal Duskywing
Male Monarch

May 29, 2017
Mourning Cloak
 Fiery Skipper

 Funereal Duskywing

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Butterfly Garden Notes, May 21, - May 23, 2017

May 21, 2017

There has been a steady flow of monarchs visiting my garden to lay eggs.  I've also seen quite a few caterpillars both in the front garden as well as on the few milkweed plants I have on the back patio.  I try not to disturb the pots too much because when I do, that's when I usually find the caterpillars and I don't want to accidentally squash them by moving things around.  I've also seen baby praying mantises both in the front garden and on the patio which isn't good for the caterpillars, but that's nature.  I saw the first fritillary of the year fluttering around the courtyard and then stopping by to nectar on the zinnia.  The usual crew is also present:  cabbage whites, skippers, sulphers, and dusky wings.  Here are some images I took with my good camera over the weekend.

I love it when I'm able to catch them in flight.
May 23, 2017
This caterpillar was on the milkweed plant on the back patio last night.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day, May 2017

I've been a little lax with my monthly postings to Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day, but I finally got around to writing a post.  If you've been following my blog, you know I have a very small space and my entire garden is in pots.  Last year I started a butterfly garden, so that my garden wouldn't just look pretty, it would serve a purpose.  All of the plants I have are either host or nectar plants for butterflies and caterpillars.  They also serve as a nectar source for hummingbirds and bees.  Some of the plants I grow include:  milkweed, rue, passionflower vine, fennel, zinnia, verbena bonariensis, pincushion flower, lavender, lantana, cleome pentas and butterfly bush to name a few.  It's not summer just yet and the weather has been fluctuation between cool and hot, but on the warm days, I have been seeing lots of butterflies, especially monarchs, and I have lots of monarch caterpillars on the milkweed.  Here are just a few photos of my 2017 Butterfly Garden.
(Taken on May 21, 2017)

Please visit May Dreams Garden Bloggers' Bloom Day, the web site that hosts this day for gardeners all over the world to share what they are growing in their gardens.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Butterfly Garden Notes May 9 - 13, 2017

Seeing lots of caterpillars.  So far all monarchs.  The garden is now doing what it's supposed to do!  Here are some photos: 

May 13
Lots of Monarch cats on this pot.
 Incoming Monarch.  This one hung around most of the day.

May 11

May 9