shooting star flower

Top 10 Native Plants

Easy to care for and beautiful too

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Sedum in a container


Native plant can thrive in containers, perfect for decks or small spaces

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Swallowtail Butterfly

Butterfly Gardening

Attract butterflies by planting native species

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Oak Leaves

Oak Leaves

Use your oak leaves to create wildflower spaces

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Plants to Attract Butterflies to Your Yard

 Tips to attract and keep butterflies in your yard:

  • Pesticides are a butterfly’s worst enemy. If absolutely necessary, apply only organic pesticides sparingly and selectively after sun-down, when most butterflies are inactive. Even better, attract beneficial insects and birds to your yard to keep pest populations under control, naturally.
  • Create basking spots for butterflies by placing a few flat stones in sunny, sheltered locations.
  • Leaf litter, fallen logs, or brush piles allow adult butterflies a safe place to hibernate.
  • Leave garden cleanup until spring or do it carefully in the fall to avoid destroying the pupae of butterflies that overwinter on plant stems or leaf litter.
  • Add some night-blooming flowers, such as Evening Primrose, Fireweed, Phlox, and Cardinal Flower, to attract night-flying moths.
Purplish copper

 Suggested Plants to Attract Butterflies:

To attract butterflies to your garden, there are two types of plants to consider: ones that draw the adult butterfly, and, more important, plants for the young larvae that will become those beautiful adults.

Larval Food Plants of Vancouver Island Butterflies

* A great choice for butterflies associated with Garry oak ecosystems.



Woodland Skipper

*Native Grasses

Two-banded Checkered Skipper


Clodius Parnassian

Western Bleeding Heart

Western Tiger Swallowtail

Poplars, Willow, Birch, Bitter Cherry

Pale Swallowtail

Alder, Cherry, Ceanothus

Anise Swallowtail

Cow Parsnip, Fennel, Parsley, Angelica

Pine White Douglas

Fir, Pine, Hemlock

Sara Orangetip

Arabis, Mustard family

Cabbage Butterfly

Cabbage family, Mustard family, Saskatoon 

Margined Whites

Mustard family - Arabis, Cardamine. 

Western Elfin

Labrador tea, Salal, Arbutus, Kinnikinnick, Manzanita

Moss’ Elfin (rare)


Western Pine Elfin

Lodgepole Pine, White Pine, Fir

Spring Azure

Spiraea, Oceanspray, Dogwood, Viburnum, Cherry, Ceanothus

Painted Lady

Thistles, Mallows, Pearly Everlasting, Borage

Cedar Hairstreak

Western Redcedar

Purplish Copper

Dock, Sorrel

Lorquin’s Admiral

Spiraea, Willow, Poplar

Red Admiral

Stinging Nettles

West Coast Lady

Stinging Nettle, Mallows

Milbert’s Tortoiseshell

Stinging Nettle

Mourning Cloak


Satyr Comma

Stinging Nettle

Mylitta Crescent

Short-styled Thistle *Native specie only

Plain Ringlet


Common Wood Nymph


To provide nectar for adult butterflies in your garden:

  • Aster Clover
  • Dogwood
  • *Stonecrop
  • *Yarrow Violet
  • Goldenrod Phlox
  • Wild Rose Spring Gold
  • Wild Strawberry
  • *Nodding Onion
  • Saskatoon Berry

* A great choice for butterflies associated with Garry Oak ecosystems.


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