When you think of the saying, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure,” you don’t often think of butterflies. But butterflies flock to rotting fruit the way we insist on drinking water. Our trash becomes their nutrition.
Honestly, you can use the turned-black bananas that you won’t even use in banana bread—in a mud puddle, which is just another way of saying “a pile of sand, fruit, and water.” Add soft strawberries, melon rinds, and compost to a bowl filled with sand or gravel. Then add stale beer, sweet drinks, or water and let ferment for a few days—Voilà!
You are now the proud creator of a mud puddle, which furnishes butterflies with the necessary nutrients and minerals. This even gives them a place to bathe and rehydrate, even though they don’t need to drink or bathe as often as birds do. Replace the food once it dries out or becomes moldy.
Attracting butterflies to your backyard gathers an excellent group of pollinators dedicated to fruits, flowers, and vegetables. Mud puddling encourages butterflies to breed, which easily multiplies your number of pollinators. Create a butterfly haven by digging a hole in the garden for the mud puddle bowl.
If you’re looking for butterfly flowers to plant in your yard, there are many lists already out there. Wait, we’ve made it easier for you. Buy pre-packaged wildflower seeds just right for attracting butterflies: pick a pack with 15 to 20 varieties; or pick a pack with 19 to 35 varieties.
Dawn Coutu watches the birds when she walks, instead of the sidewalk.
Founded in 1952 and located in Concord, New Hampshire, Duncraft's objective is to bring the joy of backyard birding to wild bird lovers all across the country.