What is more peaceful than relaxing in your own backyard during the summer? We love long sunny afternoons in a backyard oasis of lounge chairs, lemonade, and peace. Sounds idyllic, doesn’t it? Make this serene day even more beautiful by inviting butterflies to your afternoon – it is as easy as adding a few beautiful flowers to your patio or yard. Butterfly and bee gardens are a natural way to both help the environment and add color and interest to your outdoor space – and Nanz & Kraft Florists are here to help you to cultivate the perfect plants and flowers to do just that.
Why Bees? The honeybee population is in dramatic decline globally, as well as here in the US. Bees are critical to the ecosystem, especially in the area of cultivating the food (vegetables, fruit and grains) that we need. Playing even a small part to encourage the return of the bees is important – and experts assure us that when gathering nectar and pollinating, bees will almost never sting. Just leave them to do their job, and they will ignore you.
Both butterflies and bees are attracted to bright, colorful, nectar and pollen-rich plants and flowers. There are many plants that will successfully encourage both species to visit you – sunflowers, asters, zinnias, marigolds, goldenrod, daisies, and lavender for instance. You can research the types of butterflies that thrive in the Louisville area, and plant flowers specific to them; although there are several plants that are fairly universal – the butterfly bush, Joe Pye weed, milkweed, clover, and thistle should all make them feel quite welcome.
Shasta daisies and goldenrod (solidago), showcased to the left, are both highly attractive to bees and butterflies.
Plants to Repel Insects? Many plants and herbs contain essential oils that are used in insect repellents. Although the jury is still out as to if these plants, when placed in your garden, will keep insects away completely, most gardeners agree that the number of insects can be greatly reduced. Chysanthemums, petunias, allium blooms and marigolds are ornamental flowers that have this aversion to bugs – while lavender, mint, rosemary and lemongrass can be planted along the borders of your garden to help keep the pests at bay.
Butterfly and bee gardens are not only lovely, but they serve an important purpose. Nanz & Kraft Florists can help you to source the perfect flowers and plants. So whether you plant an extravagant garden, or place a few potted flower gardens around your patio, you’ll enjoy all the beauty that nature has to offer.