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Posts Tagged ‘eupatorium’

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The garden is beginning to wind down from the height of its July glory into its autumnal display. It is still attracting plenty of visitors. When I walked through the garden this weekend, it was alive with butterflies. The summer drought has made for a difficult growing season, but it seems to have been good for butterflies. There were white Cabbage butterflies and some Monarchs and Viceroys, but mostly there were Painted Ladies. Every flower was decorated with one of these beauties and I couldn’t resist photographing a sampling to share here.

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Painted Ladies (Vanessa cardui) are cosmopolitans. They can be found across the continent and throughout much of the world. Their huge range includes Europe, Asia and Africa as well as North America.

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They are not winter-hardy, and most northern residents perish. In the spring, Painted Ladies from southern areas and Mexico fly north on warm spring breezes and recolonize much of North America by summer.

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Painted Ladies nectar at a wide variety of plants, but particularly enjoy thisles. They are also adaptable in their choice of host plants for young caterpillars.

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Here is a selection of photographs of Painted Ladies visiting Agastache ‘Blue Fortune’, Cup plant (Silphium perfoliatum), Persicaria polymorpha, Rudbeckia nitida ‘Herbstonne”, hydrangea, boneset (Eupatorium perfoliatum, and Joe Pye Weed (Eupatorium spp).

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