Attract Butterflies to your Garden

Attract Butterflies to your Garden

Butterfly garden

Butterfly garden

Arizona boasts over 250 species of butterflies. With the right plants and environment you can attract these delicate beings to your Phoenix yard.

Popular butterflies in Arizona:

  • Swallowtails
  • Whites
  • Sulfurs
  • Blues
  • Hairstreaks
  • Metalmarks
  • Brushfoots
  • Skippers
  • Snouts

To create a true butterfly garden, you have to understand the phases of a butterfly metamorphis. There are four phases: Egg, Caterpillar (larvae), Chrysalis (pupa), and then the final metamorphis – a butterfly!

Butterflies need larvae plants to lay their eggs. As soon as the larvae or caterpillar is born they need to have access to the leaves they will eat to prepare for their next life cycle.

Butterflies also need nectar plants. They enjoy mass plantings of wide shallow flowers that they can easily perch on.

Plants that attract butterflies include:

  • Fern Acacia
  • Pipevine
  • Kidneywood
  • Desert Senna


Butterflies love classic annual flowers such as zinnia, cosmos, and marigold. They also love lantana, red bird of Paradise, Euroyps daisy, Baja Fairy Duster, butterfly bush, desert milkweed, and butterfly weed.

Plant your garden of flowers to attract the butterfly at all stages.

Planting somewhere that isn’t a high traffic area, but an area that you can easily observe is an ideal location for a butterfly garden.

Photos of Butterflies from the Desert Botanical Garden Butterfly Exhibit