This week I designed a butterfly garden in Glenville, NY. The bed is in constant dappled sun, so we chose butterfly host and nectar plants acclimated for both full sun and partial shade, as well as some native species shrubs to increase shady effect. Ninebark and Lindera were used, both support butterfly habitat as a host plants.

It can take awhile for native host plants to really get established and get the attention of adult butterflies so we planted a handful of herbs that will behave as temporary host plants this year. Fennel, shown in the photo, is one good example of an annual herb that doubles as a butterfly host plant.

I just learned that Golden Alexander (Zizia aurea) is butterfly host plant for the Black Swallowtail, a stunning butterfly I’d like to see more of around all the gardens in Saratoga.

The soil in this new butterfly garden in Glenville was some of the nicest I’ve seen- the homeowner used to keep his compost pile in this location.