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Butterfly FAQRSS Feed for Butterfly FAQ Updates

This FAQ is always a work-in-progress. If you have a question about butterflies, caterpillars, chrysalises, gardens, or anything else butterfly-related that you’d like answered, please send it to me from my contact page.

Host Plants

What plants should I have in my garden to attract butterflies? What are "host plants" and "nectar plants"?

What are all those plants that you talk about when you do a presentation? You talk about "host plants" versus "nectar plants", and native versus non-native, and what I can plant when I need a bush versus a vine versus a tree... where is that information?


What can I do with a chrysalis that's fallen, and is not attached to anything?

Should chrysalises be removed from enclosures that also contains caterpillars? Will caterpillars disturb chrysalises?

How can you tell if a chrysalis is still viable? I've had some where the butterfly hasn't emerged even though weeks and weeks have passed.


You talk about moving caterpillars from plant to plant. How do you do that?

How do you protect caterpillars from predators?

Can I feed my caterpillars herbs or vegatables that I buy from the supermarket?

I'm running out of host plants; can I buy more host plants from my local nursery?

What's involved in raising caterpillars in mesh bags on host plants?


Where are you located? I want to see how your climate compares with mine.