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Thursday - July 16, 2015

From: Washington, DC
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Plant Lists, Butterfly Gardens
Title: Butterfly Plants for D.C. Garden
Answered by: Anne Van Nest


I have one half of the side of the house face NE and the other half faces NW. The front of the house faces east. The back of the house faces west which is woody with native trees of Rock Creek Park of D.C. The other side faces SE and SW. So the sun and shade are different. Can you list shrubs and perennials to attract butterflies and birds, for the sides of the house NE NW, SE SW (and we have dear deer friends!).


First take a look at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center website. On the left side is a list with Special Collections being one of the page links. Next click Butterflies and Moths of North America, then narrow your search by selecting District of Columbia. This will give you 131 plants to look consider. To narrow down this list to your sun and shade requirements, select "sun" for the SW and NW sides of your house. Then select "part shade" for the SE and NE side of your house.  You can further refine your search by selecting trees or shrubs or perennials, etc. Once you have your tentative list, you might want to visit the Smithsonian Butterfly Garden to see what they have planted. This garden contains more than just native plants. 

The Smithsonian Butterfly Habitat Garden is 11,000 square foot area that supports plant species having specific relationships to life cycles of eastern United States butterflies. It is located on the East side of the National Museum of Natural History at 9th Street between Constitution Avenue and the National Mall in Washington, DC.


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