Tag: Butterflies

Birds, Butterflies, and Bison at the Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie

An hour’s drive southwest of Chicago is an 18,000-acre prairie preserve called Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie (pronounced Mi-DAY-win). The preserve was created mostly out of lands that had belonged to the now-closed Joliet Army Ammunition Plant. Today the land is part of… Read More

Painted Ladies in the Garden

We haven’t seen a Monarch since last weekend, but today there were several Painted Lady butterflies fluttering around the Mexican Sunflowers (Tithonia rotundifolia) and the various Rudbeckias.

Illinois is Milkweed Country

I’m proud to say that my state just adopted Milkweed (Asclepias spp.) as its official wildflower (the official state flower is the Violet).

If You Plant Just One Annual for Pollinators …

Pollinators love Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia rotundifolia). 

A New Tool for Wildlife Gardeners

Native Plant Finder is an online resource for people who want to attract more wildlife to their gardens. The website is sponsored by the National Wildlife Federation, with support from the University of Delaware and the US Forest Service. It draws on… Read More

The Bees Sure Do Like NE Aster

I’ve read that New England Aster (Symphyotrichum novae-angliae) is an important source of nectar for Monarch Butterflies on their southern migration. From casual observation, though, I have to conclude that Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia rotundifolia) is a much bigger draw for Monarchs and… Read More

Book Review: Gardening for Butterflies

Having just watched the second presidential debate, let me say this: let’s talk about butterflies! I mean, who doesn’t want more butterflies around? They add not just movement and beauty, but really a kind of magic to the garden.

A Pretty Good Weekend for Butterflies (ID Needed)

First of all, we now have not one, but two Monarch butterflies making multiple daily appearances. I’ve seen them flying close together, though perhaps one is pursuing the other. I’ve tried to advise them that they’re not getting any younger and they… Read More

Use That Overripe Fruit to Attract Butterflies

Did you forget about that slice of watermelon sitting in the back of the fridge? You’ve been ignoring it because throwing away food makes you feel guilty, and you’re hoping that the refrigerator fairies will carry it away. However, that dumpsterish odor… Read More

Giant Swallowtail Butterfly

I was going out this morning to pick tomatoes when I saw an unfamiliar butterfly on the Mexican Sunflowrer (Tithonia rotundifolia). Judy grabbed her camera and came outside to get some pictures. However, the humidity was so high that her lens fogged… Read More