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We hear lots that the bees are disappearing, and we have a blog post giving some tips on how to attract these instrumental animals to your garden. As the countryside continues to shrink, Britain’s gardens are becoming increasingly important havens for our wildlife. What we don’t often hear about is the increasing risk to our beautiful butterfly population. Butterflies are also at risk, especially Monarch butterflies, whose population has dropped by an estimated 90% since 1990. This is both shocking and saddening. We’ve collected some suggestions below on how to make your garden as friendly for butterflies as possible.

Butterflies Like Puddling

Puddling is just about the sweetest name for something butterflies love to do as a pass-time. Puddling is when butterflies relax in damp sand or mud, drink some water, and mineralize. You can ensure that the butterflies can do this in your garden by creating little puddling spots. All you need is a shallow dish, bowl or pan. Add a little sand, a little water, and place them in the sunniest spots in your garden.

Pick Your Plants for Colour

Butterflies are attracted to very colourful plants - think red, yellow, pink and purple. Choosing plants with these bold, striking colours will help to attract more butterflies to your garden. However, it is also best to choose to plant flowers that are native to your area. Butterflies will have evolved over time to thrive with plants that are natural to their surroundings, so you can encourage this easily be researching the plants native to you.

Provide Resting Spots

As well as drawing minerals from puddling, butterflies rely heavily on the sun. By resting in the sun, butterflies are able to warm their wings which aids them in flight. Butterflies also use the sun for orientation. If you ensure that there are some flat rocks placed in some of the extra sunny spots in your garden, butterflies can land and rest on these to rejuvenate and re-orientate themselves.