Butterfly Houses


Old 10-04-00, 10:32 AM
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I have seen plans for Butterfly Houses. They are about 2 feet tall with slits cut in the front. Anyone familiar with them? Do the Butterflys really go to them or are they just to look cute?
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Old 10-05-00, 07:44 AM
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Butterfly houses do look interesting and cute. As to whether butterflies will go to them "it depends".

The first thing you need to do is identify the type of butterflies that are in your area or can be expected to be in your area. Provide the food plants they like for themselves and also for their young.

Learn to identify their young. Many an herb gardener has destroyed that "crawly thing" on their parsley not realizing that the caterpiller like creature (green and black striped with yellow spots) will turn into a black swallowtail butterfly. Each butterfly has its own larvae form and, yes, the larvae do feed on your plants. "But, what a trade-off."

This is the best reason I can think of to stop spraying. Unless you are raising flowers for show I look at butterflies as flying flowers in my garden. In truth, if you plant 10 plants and the larvae munch a little I consider it a fair trade.

Also, butterflies need moisture which is usually provided by watering the plants. Additional moisture can be beneficial depending on how dry your climate is. If you note their habits you will see that they land on the ground to drink after irrigation watering. They do not need a pool or puddle though they will frequently drink at the very edge of a puddle where the ground moisture is high.

They need an area protected from wind. They just don't do well against more than a light breeze.

If you erect a butterfly house in the middle of a habitat they like you may find them using it. More frequently you will find them using the habitat. The house is not required by the butterflies. However, since the butterfly houses look so quaint I'd put one in there even if they never use it.

Keep an eye on it. If you find that yellow jackets are using it instead you may want to block off the openings and just enjoy the country-style look.
Old 10-06-00, 07:14 AM
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Thanks lady bug!!!!!!!!!

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