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How to make a Monarch Butterfly garden
get free

Thanks to Mississauga Community Support.

Since 2006 I have been doing Monarch Butterfly Rescue & raised some 1,300 Monarch Butterflies.
As the community is very supportive of this & would like to join in the effort - this web-page is about what I do and how to get free Butterflybush.

The method used is very simple & used 2 plants that just about anyone can grow - Milkweed & Butterflybush.
Butterflybush to attract butterflies, humming birds, bees (they need help too) and other nectar feeders & Milkweed for Monarch babies to eat.
Both plants love full sun & can grown in hotter & well-drained, dry areas.
It is one of the rare cases where you can plant for Nature and get as much for yourself as Nature does!

Yes there are many flowers which will attract butterflies & to get a listing as Monarch Waystation you should have more then just Butterflybush,
but in terms of the biggest bang for your buck and fastest results - to start with, it is the way to go.


   A good place to start is a local (to Mississauga) like Sheridan Nurseries <>
In the search bar put in Buddleia davidii - tried Butterfly bush as one or two words & just doesn't work.

Then there is Humber Nurseries Ltd. <>
It will use Butterfly bush as two words.

First you have top select what size you want, then what colour of bush.
It comes in the small - Compact or Dwarf - large which can grow to ten feet tall in a few years.
Some even have leaves that are two coloured.

As you can see there are many different colours & flower clusters types;

- Snowball Butterflybush (white & round balls of flowers)
- White Profusion Butterflybush (the king of size & white)
- White Ball Butterflybush

- Honeycomb Butterflybush (yellow & balls of flowers)

- Peacock Butterflybush PW (pink)
- Pink Delight Butterflybush
- Miss Molly Butterflybush (light red)
- Royal Red Butterflybush (deep red)

- Lo & Behold Butterflybush TM (light blue)
- Lochinch Butterflybush (light blue)
- Ellen's Blue Butterflybush
- Empire Blue Butterflybush
- Nanho Blue Butterflybush
- Adonis Blue Butterflybush PW (deep blue)

- Petite Plum Butterflybush (light purple)
- Santana Butterflybush (light purple)
- Petite Indigo Butterflybush (light purple)
- Potter's Purple Butterflybush
- Purple Haze Lo & BeholdŽ Butterflybush
- Nanho Purple Butterflybush
- Purple Emperor Butterflybush PW
- Black Knight Butterflybush (dark purple)


- Buddleja X weyeriana 'Bicolor' - sometimes called Kaleidoscope (each flower has 2 or 5 colours) - Humber Nurseries Ltd.
- then there are bushes that have 3 sections, one white, one blue & one purple.

On our property at Exbury Cres. Mississauga., there are a number of Butterflybushes planted so people can see the different colours
and see which draw butterflies the best.

Positive & Negative of Butterflybush;

Butterflybush puts out flowers at the end of each branch & it keeps putting branches out in groups of three.
It will keep on flowering from around the start of July (depending on weather) till the frost kills its leaves in the fall.
It is a perennial, so it will come back each year.
Its flowers have fragrance and many cutting can be taken for your tables.
Doesn't require special plant food.
In the early spring the plant can be cut back greatly or just to it large branches.

Butterflybush is not a native plant to Canada & it has been listed in some places - to the south - as invasive.
However, in Canada, the climate is so cold that its seeds almost never take hold - the only time I have heard of seeds growing were those which fell into cracks in pavement or stones on the patios.  Both of which are easy to control.
It will need to be "dead headed" which means, to keep it looking its best & performing the function it was planted for, the dead heads are flowers that have flowered and are going to seed - brown.  In order to keep the flowers coming & the plants energy going into making flowers - the brown ends will need to be trimmed off.
The bush its self is not very dense, so it looks thin as bushes go.

So once you make up your mind on what kind of Buttretflybush you want & a very sunny place for it and the milkweed
 - contact me.  Same for if you have questions.


It is native to Canada & well, it grows like a weed!  Give it a chance to grow and it will not disappoint.
The only reason it is planted is because it is almost the only thing Monarch caterpillars eat.
It spreads by roots/rhizome and seeds.  The seed pods put out those seeds with the silk parachutes we all know of & to control them, cut the pods off before they can open.
To contr5ol spread by roots, put a underground barrier, about a foot in the ground to stop spread this way.  You can also grow them in large pots.
It is easiest to dig up small plants in the wild into pots.

Milkweeds are an important component of the native and naturalized vegetation communities of Ontario as they are an important nectaring plant for many species of Lepidoptera, such as the Monarch butterfly.
Milkweed is listed as a Noxious weed under the Weed Control Act, which means the government wants to get rid of it - why?
Many years ago - before the idea of the environment being at risk from people ever existed, what the farmers wanted - they got.
Milkweeds are generally thought to be poisonous to livestock and the plant contains cardiac glycosides, which are toxic to animals.
Because Milkweeds are normally distasteful to livestock & unpalatable it is rare for them to suffer from eating it.
This is the Milkweeds natural protection & it works very well, so well Monarch butterflies use it to!
Most milkweed species are poisonous to livestock (to some degree - IF - eaten) only common milkweed (Asclepias syriaca)
would normally be found in waste places and pastures where livestock graze.  Death is not likely unless large quantities are consumed.
"Enforcement under the Act will only occur if a common milkweed population is negatively affecting commercial agriculture or horticulture production."
So if livestock or cattle are not going to be grazing in your yard or their feed cut from your north 40,
then feel safe to plant Milkweed.

On the flip side, because Monarch caterpillars eat Milkweed, its unpalatable toxins become a permanent part of the butterfly's body,
that protect it from being eaten by birds, etc.  They may eat one, once but not again.

A List of Milkweed Species Currently in Ontario
- Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca) - (S Rank: S5)
- Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) - (S Rank: S5)
- Butterfly-weed (Asclepias tuberosa) - (S Rank: S4)
- Poke Milkweed (Asclepias exaltata) - (S Rank: S4)
- Purple Milkweed (Asclepias purpurascens) - (S Rank: S2)
- Sullivant's Milkweed (Asclepias sullivantii) - (S Rank: S2)
- Whorled Milkweed (Asclepias verticillata) - (S Rank: S2)
- Green Milkweed (Asclepias viridiflora) - (S Rank: S2)
- Prairie Milkweed (Asclepias hirtella) - (S Rank: S2)
- Black Swallow-wort (Cynanchum nigrum) - Invasive

There are other Milkweed's from other parts of the world.

On to raise Monarch Butterflies;

Good place to go is -
   M o n a r c h  W a t c h    -

However it is very easy - once you see Monarch butterflies in area, look for eggs.
My web-page supply many pictures of where & what to look for.
Remove the whole leaf an egg is on and put in a jar or aquarium with a net or mash top.
Keep feeding it Milkweed leaves and cleaning up what is left over, like any other baby.
It will go to chrysalis & once it comes out - let it go.
And have a small party doing so.


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