Steph's Virtual Garden's Butterfly Host Plants
These are plants I've seen Butterflies or Moths use as Host Plants in South East Florida.
Click on any of them to go to a page on that plant, or scroll down past the pictures to read more about Butterfly and Moth Host plants.
Passiflora suberosa, Corkystem passionvine
Corkystem Passionvine
Asclepias curassavica Milkweed
Asclepias curassavica
Milkweed
White Vine Milkweed
White Vine Milkweed
Giant Milkweed
Giant Milkweed
Wild Lime, Zanthoxylum
Wild Lime
Hercules Club, Zanthoxylum clava-herculis
Hercules Club
Zanthoxylum clava-herculis
Phila nodiflora
Phyla Nodiflora
Cassia
Cassia
Cassia
Cassia
Cassia
Cassia
Bacopa, Waterhyssop
Bacopa
Waterhyssop
Dutchman's Pipe, Pipevine
Pipevine
Dill
Dill
Desmodium
Desmodium
Coontie
Coontie
Vigna luteola
Vigna luteola
mustard
Mustard
Virginia pepperweed
Virginia Pepperweed
Green Shrimp Plant
Green Shrimp Plant
Green Shrimp Plant
Green Shrimp Plant

Pellitory (See the egg on the leaf?)

Grapefruit

Sida acuta (Broom Weed)
Plumbago
Plumbago
Fennel Flower
Fennel
 
Moth Host Plants
Commelina diffusa,Dayflower
Commelina diffusa,
Dayflower
Ludwigia peruviana, Primrose
Ludwigia peruviana,
Primrose
Firebush
Firebush
Rattlebox
Rattlebox

Wild Poinsettia
Euphorbia cyathophora
   
More about Lawn Weeds
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Host Plants
Host plants are any plant that a butterfly lays eggs on. The eggs hatch into tiny hungry caterpillars, and they spend a couple of weeks eating the plant.
This monarch is laying an egg on milkweed.

You can see another egg underneath the leaf below her abdomen.

Look through my caterpillar, butterfly & host plant pages to see all the different little caterpillars I've found. I'll keep adding them as I find them.

The host plants will look ragged and chewed, and the hungry caterpillars will occasionally completely defoliate the plants. They generally grow back.

I've planted as many host plants as I can in my yard, and I'm still planting more. It started when I noticed several pretty butterflies that seemed to always linger in the trees beside my house. Then I noticed that there weren't as many of them. I wondered what they were, and why they were always in the same area, and why their numbers were dwindling. I found out that they are our state butterfly, the Zebra Heliconian, and that they use Corky stem passion vine,  (Passiflora suberosa) as their host plant. They were vanishing because I’d been clearing a nasty overgrowth of Australian Pine, and while I was sawing and chopping and weed-eating the (explicative deleted; see my page on those vile trees for details) saplings, I’d been unwittingly destroying the vine as well.

At first, I hid my host plants where they were harder to see, but I noticed that my resident butterflies, like my Zebra Heliconians, Sulphurs, Cassius Blues and Gulf Fritillaries spend a great deal of time fluttering about their host plant laying eggs and dancing with potential mates, so I started putting the host plants right by the front porch and in front of the kitchen window where I can really enjoy watching them even when I'm in a hurry or doing dishes.

Some butterflies, like the Atala, use only one type of plant. Others will use many related plants. Have a look through my Host Plant pages (above) or my Butterfly pages to find out what I've seen each butterfly use so far, and enjoy the photos.

I get most of my plants by collecting seeds, as cuttings or seedlings from friends, or from my favorite plant source, Meadow Beauty Nursery.

Site Map:
Butterflies
Moths
Caterpillars
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Warblers & Little Birds
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Snakes, Lizards, and Slithery Critters
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Butterfly Nectar Plants
Butterfly & Moth Host Plants
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Paper Folding: Origami Bird, Egg, and Nest
Paper Quilling: Snowflake Ornaments
Cut Paper Snowflakes
Butterfly Garden Basics
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