Discover the Fun of Gardening
October 18, 2018   
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Garden Tip  |   Featured Plants   |  Fall Workshops  

A buzz-buzz visitor on my desk.

Early the other morning, I was working in my office when I heard a strange rustling sound. Assuming it was that most notorious of Florida home invaders, the cockroach, I went to find the source and do some squishing. I looked under a table, under the desk and couldn't find anything and then suddenly, the sound was buzzing past my ear. The invader had wings. Mosquitos have been bad in our yard, so that was my next assumption. Then I looked at my laptop and there was a little bee just going for a stroll across the screen. He was a nosy fellow and decided he needed to check out everything. I tried to tell him he wouldn't find any pollen or nectar, but that didn't stop him from trying. He eventually found his way to my mouse and investigated long enough for me to snap a picture. He kept checking out the room, buzzing this way and that, and I just let him, because pollinators are important. OK he probably won't help set tomatoes or cucumbers inside the house, but I just couldn't bring myself to shoo him out.

So he watched while I started up the e-newsletter for this week, which isn't about bees, but is about another of our favorite pollinators. Can you guess which one? You may not have immediately thought of butterflies when you were trying to think of another pollinator, but in addition to their gorgeous color and miraculous transformation from caterpillar to butterfly, they are also great pollinators for veggie gardens and fruit trees, just like bees. So see below for some tips on planting and caring for a butterfly garden and if you really want to make your garden (I promise not your office) a favorite hangout for the neighborhood butterflies, come out Saturday morning at 10am for the Fall Butterfly Workshop. And if you can, bring some cool weather with you. 

Happy Gardening,
The Kerby's Nursery Family

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Add butterfly magic to your garden.
Garden Tip
Gardening for Butterflies

There is nothing like watching butterflies flutter around your garden. If you are new to butterfly gardening, or just want to attract as many as possible, check out the tips below and don't forget to join us this Saturday at 10am for the Butterfly Gardening Workshop.
1) Start with Nectar Plants - Nectar plants are food for the adult butterflies. Pentas, salvia, firecracker, firebush . . . there are so many to choose from. Before you head on to host plants like milkweed, make sure you've got plenty of flowers for the butterflies to feed on.
2) Hide Host Plants - Host plants are food for the caterpillars. Design your garden so that host plants like milkweed are hidden by other prettier plants. When caterpillars start eating, they can be voracious and you may not have much of the host plants left.
3) Don't use pesticides - On or near your butterfly garden. Even organic insecticides are intended to kill insects and, as pretty as they are, butterflies are still bugs. We often get asked about aphids and milkweed bugs. Control aphids by pruning and disposing of affected branches and leaves, or by introducing ladybugs into your butterfly garden. For milkweed bugs, it's the old flick and squish that tends to work the best.
4) Plant a variety - To attract butterflies of all shapes and sizes, plant flowers of different shapes, colors and sizes. A butterfly's feeding appendage is called a proboscis and each species has one of a slightly different size, so a variety of flowers creates the best opportunity for all types of butterflies to find food.
5) Be a little wild - Your HOA may not approve, but leaving some of your yard wild and overgrown provides shelter, wild food sources and puddling opportunities for butterflies. You'll have the most consistent butterfly populations if there are wild areas near or in your yard.
Now get out and enjoy!
Make Fall Happen
Milkweed Special

This Week Only
6" Pot - 4 for $20
Rockin Golden Delicious Salvia

Unique golden leaves.
6" Pot - $7.99
Crape Myrtles

Fall Sale
All Sizes 25% Off

Kerby's Nursery

2311 S. Parsons Ave.

Seffner, FL 33584
(813) 685-3265

Store Hours
Open Seven Days a Week
Monday - Saturday,  9am - 5:30pm
Sunday,  11am - 4pm