Shotwell Landfill in Wendell, N.C., has installed its newest environmentally friendly feature: a butterfly garden.
Butterfly watching has gained a lot of interest in recent years. Butterflies are colorful and interesting, adding an element of moving beauty to the garden. North Carolina is home to more than 175 species of butterflies, making our state an ideal area for butterfly watching. With a little bit of planning you can develop a garden that will attract a diverse population of butterflies.
Why a butterfly garden at a C&D Landfill?
First, there is a lot of greenspace! Not only the "cap" of a completed landfill cell, but each day cells get covered in at least six inches of compacted soil or alternative cover.
According to the experts at North Carolina State University, besides plants, there are other important considerations when building a butterfly garden. Butterflies need shelter and overwintering areas. Most species survive the winter by hibernating as caterpillars, pupae or adults. When possible, leave snags (standing dead trees) or brush piles in the landscape for overwintering. Throughout the growing season and fall, leave dead flower heads and dead foliage on the plants or you may accidentally remove eggs or pupating butterflies. Provide a mud puddle or damp sandy area for male butterflies to congregate around as well as a few large flat rocks or a small area of dark pebbles for butterflies to perch on while basking in the sun. Fruit peels, cores and rotten fruit can be placed in a discrete location in the garden where they will attract butterflies that eat rotting fruit.
While our landfill may not have the aformentioned organiic matter, we do have plenty of greenspace to plant! Butterflies welcome!
Read more at: Building A Butterfly Garden