Flowers are not the only option for attracting butterflies to your garden. Another trick is setting up a butterfly bar. Here’s a recipe and some tips on how to get started.
- Cheap red wine
- Brown sugar
You’ll also need a jar (e.g. a yoghurt glass), some string and a sponge. Depending on your imagination, you’ll perhaps need some other stuff as well.
Start by creating the mixture. Take some of the red wine and add brown sugar as much as the wine can take. You may heat up the wine in a microwave oven or on a plate so the sugar dissolves easier. Note: Make sure the alcohol does not evaporate since it’s a feast for butterflies providing them with lots of energy.
Feel free to add syrup or honey to the mixture (I got my results with plain brown sugar though). Adding vinegar will help you to get rid of flies if you’re annoyed by them visiting your bar.
Cut the sponge into small stripes (see photo). Place the stripes in the jar filled with the mixture. Use the string to place the jar hanging on a hook or e.g. branch on a tree in your garden. Personally, I’m using a spoon once daily to fresh-up the mixture and make sure the sponge stripes are properly soaked in the mixture.
Make sure to place the jar on a hot sunny spot in your garden (or why not balcony). Add some red wine every couple days to make sure the jar is full until its limit. That’s all. Have fun waiting for visitors.
It took a moment to attract the first individuals. But once the word spreads (or probably more the odour), we ended up having some buzz during our happy hour (see photos).
I wasn’t aware there’s this many Commas (Polygonia c-album) around. And getting a Scarce Tortoiseshell (Nymphalis xanthomelas) directly into our garden was a nice surprise, as well. Let’s see who’ll step by next.