Gardens can act as important stepping stones between nature reserves and other natural habitat by offering abundant supplies of nectar from March until October/November. Butterflies will visit any garden, however small, if they can feed from suitable nectar plants. A well thought out garden can attract up to 18 species of butterfly, or more if breeding habitat is also provided. Actions you can take:
  1. Provide nectar sources.
  2. Provide caterpillar food plants.
  3. Don't use chemical pesticides and herbicides.
  4. Leave fallen fruit under fruit trees.

Top ten nectar plants

  • Buddleia : Red Admiral, Comma, Small Tortoiseshell, Peacock, Large White, Small White, Brimstone
  • Verbena : Red Admiral, Large White, Comma
  • Knapweed (Centaurea) : Painted Lady, Small Tortoiseshell, Meadow Brown, Gatekeeper, Common Blue, Large White
  • Ivy : Red Admiral, Comma
  • Hemp Agrimony (Eupatorium) : Red Admiral, Peacock, Comma, Speckled Wood
  • Marjoram : Gatekeeper, Meadow Brown, Common Blue
  • Michaelmas Daisy : Red Admiral, Small Tortoiseshell
  • Lavender : Large White, Small White, Gatekeeper
  • Sedum : Small Tortoiseshell, Red Admiral
  • Perennial Wallflower : Painted Lady, Large White, Small White
A more comprehensive list of plants for different situations can be found here.

Submitting Records

Garden records should be sent to the Garden Survey Co-ordinator. Please use the spreadsheet to submit your records if possible. The Co-ordinator will pass gardens records on to the Butterfly Records Officer.