London (change)
20 messages
22/06/2013 at 23:38

I have plenty of bees and hover flies in my semi rural garden and I grow a good variety of insect friendly nectar rich plants including buddleias and nettles......but I seem to have very few visiting butterflies except the inevitable cabbage whites.I'm not sure whether my garden is a lot more exposed than anyone else's although it is situated on a southwesterly slope facing the prevailing wind. Am I missing a trick or are there perhaps very few butterflies around these days? Any advice would be welcome.


22/06/2013 at 23:58

Very few butterflies around at the moment. The weather has just been terrible for them. My garden usually has lots of butterflies but this year my count has been very low.maximum number of species seen at one time but not all of them at the same time! - 2 orange tip, 2 holly blue, 3 cabbage white, 1 speckled wood, 1 red admiral and 1 comma so far this year.

23/06/2013 at 00:31

Thanks Daintiness. My observations about lack of butterflies in my garden however applies not just to this present summer....which is clearly not going to be conducive to butterfly sightings ....but to previous summers as well. Im  interested to know why you think your garden normally attracts plenty of it very warm and sheltered I wonder. 


23/06/2013 at 08:19

My top butterfly attractors include majoram/oregano and viper's bugloss

23/06/2013 at 08:37

They were around a few weeks ago, but I haven't had many recently. My top attractors are Sedum spectabile royal Purple and Verbena bonariensis, though I've recently let Garlic Mustard grow under my hedge and found this one the other week. I think it's a Grizzled Skipper.

Incidentally, the Geranium Johnson's Blue was a real Beestro yesterday. I counted 12 Bees at one time on the one plant.


23/06/2013 at 08:54

 Nice q-r. I've neverseen a Grizzled skipper

23/06/2013 at 09:06

Me neither Nut, I had to look it up. What I've read about it, it says it's not common round this part of the country so quite exciting!

23/06/2013 at 20:14

Thanks everyone.....I actually grow all of above plants....but must make a point of allowing my herbs to flower! i seem to attract far more bees than butterflies.....also I'm not sure what would be an average butterfly count for a garden.....I certainly have far far  less than I remember in my childhood garden 50yrs ago when our solitary buddleia bush would be  constantly smothered with them.

23/06/2013 at 20:18

there's far less of all the insects Tallulah. Mostly down to destruction of habitat and insecticides. 

23/06/2013 at 20:43

I have a pond and created a sheltered seating area near it with lots of the above mentioned flowers and more and the butterfles seem to favour this area. At the moment I have buddleia globosa in flower and today there were lots of bees on it but no butterflies - again the day was too windy and cold for butterflies to be about. Wimbledon starts tomorrow so the next fortnoght will probably be no better.... 

24/06/2013 at 06:36

24/06/2013 at 08:24

I remember as a child that Red Admirals were very common. Can't remember the last time I saw one 

28/06/2013 at 12:55

It's a pity! I miss all the butterflies in my garden too. I'm new to gardening... so I guess  I'll have to wait for a bit. 

Stumbled over this the other day, which helped me a lot as a Greenhorn. xD

28/06/2013 at 13:43

Butterflies are struggling somewhat after the wash out last year, although just yesterday saw freshly hatched red admirals. Saw peacocks earlier in the year, large whites around at the mo and holly and common blues. Do you get many moths at night too, not even seen large yellow underwings this year!

Also anyone seeing many ladybirds this year? Can count on one hand the number I've seen in mine and my customers gardens this year!

28/06/2013 at 14:04

moths not bad sunnydayz, seen a couple of LYUs but had to set moth trap to do so. ladybirds very poor. Thre were some earlier in the year but none now. 

29/06/2013 at 01:37

No come to think of it  have seen no ladybirds so far well as no lily beetles or butterflies. The only insect I seem to have in abundance is bumble bees. Sadly the slugs don't seem to have been in any way deterred by a long cold winter. Have also noticed a frog and a toad which means there should be many more that I haven't noticed!

29/06/2013 at 06:39

Looks like a female Orange-tip (which don't have orange tips). They favour crucifers for egg-laying.

29/06/2013 at 09:32
Joe_the_Gardener wrote (see)

Looks like a female Orange-tip (which don't have orange tips). They favour crucifers for egg-laying.


Which lay their eggs on this plant 

30/06/2013 at 06:28

Other Cruciferae are available.

30/06/2013 at 10:04

You can hang slices of oranges up round the garden as a welcome butterfly food. They love them

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