Dear Mr. Smarty Plants, I am a teacher working with very young students to establish a wildlife garden. We received a donated butterfly bush of a smallish cultivar, but wondering if there is a native shrub not too large for our corner garden that would also attract butterflies, etc. What are native alternatives to butterfly bushes?
On our Recommended Species page you will find under "Special Collections" a list titled Butterflies and Moths of North America containing native plants that are valuable to moths and butterflies. Once you have opened that database with more than 350 species of native plants, you can limit the list to your area by using the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option and choosing either Maryland or Virginia. This will give you a list of more than 180 native plant species for butterflies that grow in those states. You can also use the NARROW YOUR SEARCH option to select for what type of plant you want (e.g., Shrub, Herb, Fern, etc.) and to choose plants that will work with the amount of sunlight and soil moisture your site has.
Here are a few suggestions from that list using Maryland as the state choice. There are many more choices of plants for you to see.
Texas natives that attract butterflies but not deer December 13, 2012 - I'd like to have some plants in my garden that are butterfly attractors, but that whitetail deer won't like. I can find lists of butterfly plants, and lists of deer-resistant plants -- is there a li... view the full question and answer
Butterfly/hummingbird garden plants for Hill Country, TX February 04, 2011 - What drought resistant plants would you recommend for a Hill Country butterfly/hummingbird garden that receives at least a half day of sun? It has afternoon exposure. view the full question and answer
Growing butterfly weed as a girl scout project July 30, 2012 - We have a group of girl scouts who want to sell 'crafts' at a farmers market. I am wanting to steer the moms and girls in a different direction. I was wondering if you think that butterfly weed woul... view the full question and answer
Identification of plant with small lilac flowers in Laredo May 14, 2013 - Need help identifying the following: small lilac flowers in a cluster with seed pods, unpleasant scent which can be up to 3 feet tall ..wild flower or weed? am interested if it attracts hummingbirds... view the full question and answer
What species of Aristolochia occur in Hidalgo County, TX? August 06, 2009 - What species of Aristolochia or are in the Aristolochiaceae family occur in the Lower Rio Grande Valley, particularly Hidalgo Co., TX. Both Pipevine and Polydamas Swallowtail butterflies occur down h... view the full question and answer