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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

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Wednesday - April 15, 2015

From: Darien, CT
Region: Northeast
Topic: Plant Lists, Butterfly Gardens
Title: Butterfly and Hummingbird Attracting Plants for CT
Answered by: Anne Van Nest

QUESTION:

Could you please give me a list of flowers that would attract butterflies and hummingbirds? I live in Darien, Connecticut and would love to make a butterfly garden.

ANSWER:

To develop a list of plants that are beneficial to butterflies and moths and that grow in Connecticut, start with our special collections list of Plants for Butterflies and Moths of North America. Next, narrow your search to only Connecticut native plants by selecting your state. Then select "herb" general appearance and "perennial" lifespan. This will give you a list of 43 plants for your region.When you look over these plants, check out the "Use Wildlife" under the Benefits section and you will see if the plant is also attracts hummingbirds (many do).

Some of these include:

Actaea racemosa var. racemosa (Black cohosh)

Aquilegia canadensis (Eastern red columbine)

Asclepias syriaca (Common milkweed)

Asclepias tuberosa (Butterflyweed)

Desmodium canadense (Showy tick trefoil)

Helianthus decapetalus (Thinleaf sunflower)

Lupinus perennis (Sundial lupine)

Penstemon hirsutus (Hairy penstemon)

Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima (Blackeyed Susan)

Senna hebecarpa (American senna)

Symphyotrichum novae-angliae (New England aster)

Zizia aurea (Golden zizia)

 

From the Image Gallery


Black cohosh
Actaea racemosa var. racemosa

Eastern red columbine
Aquilegia canadensis

Common milkweed
Asclepias syriaca

Butterflyweed
Asclepias tuberosa

Showy tick trefoil
Desmodium canadense

Thinleaf sunflower
Helianthus decapetalus

Sundial lupine
Lupinus perennis

Hairy penstemon
Penstemon hirsutus

Blackeyed susan
Rudbeckia hirta var. pulcherrima

American senna
Senna hebecarpa

New england aster
Symphyotrichum novae-angliae

Golden zizia
Zizia aurea

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