Barling, AR(Zone 7b)

New thread we came from Daily Pictures #110.For everyone with and interest and love of butterflying, rearing, and butterfly gardening.
Image is a Common Buckeye on mist flower. Common (widespread) but always beautiful and mischievous.

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Barling, AR(Zone 7b)

Several members have expressed an interest in sulphur butterflies. Host plants for several sulphurs such as Clouded and Orange are legumes which includes clovers and alfalfa. The large Cloudless Sulphur and the Sleepy Orange use sennas. I've used Coffee weed and Partridge pea as senna host plants successfully for these species. Plant them as well as some red or pink nectar plants and they will come.

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Anna, IL(Zone 6b)

Beautiful pictures! The colors and beauty in the buckeye picture is awesome.

I didn't get my camera quick enough yesterday as I had one of the large (as you say) Cloudless Sulphur on a yellow zinnia. The two yellow colors were awesome. Looks like the butterfly above are enjoying Butterfly Weed, Coneflower and the Vervain Verbena.

I was too busy watching the rabbit run down the flower row today and I missed seeing the butterfly.

Anderson, IN(Zone 6a)

Ivy, Very nice , and enjoyable photo's and info I had a few Sulphur visit the Tithonia and Zinnia .
I hope to have a few more next season ,

Algonquin, IL(Zone 5a)

Thanks for the new thread, Ivy!

Beautiful pic of the Buckeye & very interesting info about host plants for Sulphurs.
BTW, using your helpful ID on my Banded Hairstreak shots (from July) I was able to add a few pics to BugFiles. Surprisingly, there had only been one picture before mine.

And, from the last thread:
Kim, I do like your "rest of the story"! Do you plan to bring the Monarch eggs inside?

Ju, Pretty pics...I sure do like that Tithonia! I bet rabbits nibble on alfalfa.
Amorpha Fruitcosa? What is it?

Anderson, IN(Zone 6a)

Hi ya, Nuts , it is A shrub or bush form of False indigo . Host for silver spotted skippers

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Thanks Ivy for the new thread. Speaking of Sulphurs, I was chasing one hoping to catch a good pix yesterday evening around dinner time. It must have been trying to hide under my red Cypress vine, dills, and wild morning glory pot. Or it was just newly eclosed? I did not care, I just tried to catch a pix but couldn't. My one and only survival sulphur chrysalis changed its color, I hope it will successfully make it to spread its wings.

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Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Quote from juhur7 :
Hi ya, Nuts , it is A shrub or bush form of False indigo . Host for silver spotted skippers

Whoa! Ju, I wasn't aware of that! I'm nuts about False Indigo, in fact I've planted several in the garden, got one hybrid that blooms light lavender color. I have had it forever, it seems. This year, though I haven't as many S.S.S. in the garden, it must have been the bug man treating sweet ants around the perimeter of the house (where my indigo situated). The bug man, mind ya, didn't like me the woman of the house. He must have thought I was nuts when I told him not to treat my front yard and back yard for my butterflies sake, but DH has to give in (to the insecticide tx.) because if not, those sweet ants will find their way inside the house as the weather turns cooler, down here. Thanks for passing that on.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

N.A.N. I already have, I collected a few yesterday from the garden. Only this time, I keep the batch separated from the munching-machine larvae. :))

Oh, talking of munching machines; before sunrise this morning I noticed that my chubby munkins are just munching away. I also experience it first hand, this little ones are indeed nocturnal. Look!

1) Fresh MW provided, fresh bedding yesterday evening.
2) MW, what MW?, only the stalks left this early morning before sunrise.

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Algonquin, IL(Zone 5a)

Thanks, Ju!

Kim, does anyone really know if cats even sleep? How could you even tell. If their life in that form is short, maybe they don't sleep at all?

Anderson, IN(Zone 6a)

I had a small one growing I lost , the shrub , Now I am doing and arranging again , however , look here this afternoon ,

Silver Spotted Skipper and a couple of Female Monarch butterflies

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Central, AL(Zone 7b)

N.A.N. Good question, I guess I haven't questioned that myself. I assumed that they maybe busy hiding from predators during the day hours, and come out to eat at night. Just a self-protective mechanism? That said, for those I have been watching the past few days, they were busy eating, occasionally I'll see a few wandering off the MW I anticipate they will molt one more time before they turn into chrysalis. But, a few hours later, they returned to eat again. :)
This early morning I found two more chubby instars, the same size as what I've indoor. This evening I found 3 more of those big chubby cats. So that means these were from the same first batch that I discovered first week of Sept., now well onto the second week, I'm looking forward to see them shed their skin for the final time.

1. Fresh cuttings MW, at these size, I have to provide twice this amount, one in the morning, one at night. Clean the frass (cats poop) out at least once a day. Remember to wash hand real well afterward.
2. Ju, this is my outdoor tropical collection. They enjoy the growing season outdoor, until first frost hit, then I move them inside.
3. Ah hah, I noticed that the egg that I found on Sept. 3rd, the egg itself has darken, ready to hatch, this is outdoor, so I'll be looking for that tiny 1st instar on the same plant in the morning.
4. Those chubby 3rd instars, there are roughly 20 of them munching days/night, whenever I happen to pass by, they're busy eating. :)
5. My first, and only Sulphur chrysalis.

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Anderson, IN(Zone 6a)

nice plants Lily , I can only mostly do weeds , lol ?


Silver spotted Skipper
Cabbage white
Pearl crescent

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Algonquin, IL(Zone 5a)

Love the pics, Ju and Kim!

Kim, those cats look huge and so many of them. Do you have food for them all?

Ju, the Pearl Crescent is Beautiful!! I've never been lucky enough to see one.

Anderson, IN(Zone 6a)

Here they play around the drive, rarely still , the behave somewhat like a moth ,
Little that one is about the size of the end of a stirring spoon
Smooth leaved Asters are their host plant

Anderson, IN(Zone 6a)

Nuts something fury and small playing in the Chicory ,,

A skipper

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Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Ju, it's all good. "Weeds is only, .... well like beauty, it's in the eyes of the beholders". LOL

NAN, they are pretty "huge" but in relation with some moth's larvae, it's a dwarf, or miniature little ones? So it's only a relative term? LOL
Yes, from years experience of saving the MWs for Monarch, I think I've enough for this year. I'm keeping my fingers crossed though. I looked at example from the professionals -- for example what I saw yesterday from the Botanical's butterfly house; they've a big volume of MWs in pots that were chewed down to bare stalks. But, then again, I have no idea the number of Monarch cats they cared for? One lady there mentioned that in peak season, they care for a total 17 species of butterflies. 17 species, so the Monarch is but a small fraction of the whole. There is so much to learn, so little time to appreciate it all! COL (that's for crying out loud), and yes an Alabamian gardener just coined that TERM, oh another, TOL for thinking out loud. Grins.

1. MWs? I can't visualize this tiny thumbnail pix, it all looks the same to my UN-aided eyes. COL!!!

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Anderson, IN(Zone 6a)

Lily Boom ,, a milkweed patch ,!!! lol that looks delicious ,, were on our way , below ,

Males in large numbers before , now today like yesterday , one lone female , drifting southbound , Males obviously will be patrolling and waiting ,

This message was edited Sep 17, 2015 3:48 PM

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Algonquin, IL(Zone 5a)

Ju, your picture of the Skipper is amazing...good job!! The Monarch is lovely, too.

Kim, is that your Milkweed or at the Butterfly House? That's a lot of Milkweed! It's beautiful. I can only imagine how it would look to a migrating flock of Monarchs!

Barling, AR(Zone 7b)

Ju, you have a lovely Peck's skipper on the chicory. We don't get them here so have to look at pictures to enjoy. Thanks for sharing.

Lily, what a great patch of MW. Mine is only bare stalks. Hopefully yours will be next.

Monarch Butterfly Journey North shows a tree covered with Monarchs near Cleveland

Anderson, IN(Zone 6a)

Nice link ,,^_^ Ivy !!!

Algonquin, IL(Zone 5a)

Ivy, Thanks for the link to that beautiful Journey North pic.

I once witnessed a "record" Monarch migration over 40 years ago in Northern California. It was an awesome sight, but also very sad as many thousands were hit by cars on the highway because there was no way to avoid them.

Ju, I looked up Peck's Skipper on BugFiles after reading Ivy's ID. There are only 11 pictures and most are no where near as good as yours. Maybe you would consider uploading your pic?


This message was edited Sep 17, 2015 6:41 PM

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Great pics. as usual Ivy, thank you for sharing all the interesting info. about different types of butterflies.

Ju, like you --I was glad that the pix indeed was the right one that I wanted to share. :)

NAN, nope that ain't mine, the pix was taken at Huntsville Botanical Garden. It was a pleasant visit. DH and I try to at least visit the Botanical Garden at least once a year to enjoy the butterflies.

Big news all; I finally have four or five 5th instars that have spun their silk for their final molt this morning. Yep, as close as I've been watching these fat cats. I totally missed out their last transition from 3rd to 4th instars, now; I've the 5th instars that are transitioning to chrysalis. Dancing with joy. :)

1) ?4th, or 5th instar's resting, spun its silk -- I think -- I would not move this cat during this sensitive phase.
2) pix of couple of the 5th instars that had purged the greenish stuff -- whatchamacallit -- and spun silk and suspend themselves upside down in J-position.
3) Here is a few of my tropical Milkweed in my garden. In this pix there is a seedpod as you can see. I'll try to bag these seedpods, just incase for future use in the garden. I'll make a note that, locally in my garden, the first seedpod is found during Journey South migration this year.
4) Fresh MW provided last evening. This morning they're all eaten, fresh one is needed first thing in the morning hours.
5) How about the eggs? How long will it take before the cat will eat its way out of the shell? It's said that it will take 5 days? Um, I really have lost count, and missed out on this round. Those that I collected and brought indoor? I just found a first instar crawling around. :)

Happy butterflies gardening everyone.

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Central, AL(Zone 7b)

News alert! I'm currently watching a 5th instar pupates into a chrysalis! I videoed the neat occurrence happening right in front of my own eyes just now. Will upload a pix in a min.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

My very first chrysalis for the season.

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Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Update, here is a brand new, complete Mornach chrysalis. 😃

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Algonquin, IL(Zone 5a)

Kim, great pics and another fantastic tutorial in your post from this morning!!

But OMG your last two shots are amazing...a brand new chrysalis! Just reading about all your success has been both exciting and a terrific learning experience.

I read an article a couple of days ago (can't remember where) and they mentioned an Asclepias that is shade tolerant. It's called Asclepias 'exaltata' or Poke Milkweed. Boy, with all my shade, that's one I may like to try.


This message was edited Oct 23, 2015 10:02 AM

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

N.A.N. that Poke Milkweed sounds like what I need. Thank you. I think I've planted the common MW, they refused to bloom for me, I move one into a pot culture in a sunny area with added fertilizer, still it didn't yield any flowers, I was a little discouraged. But a few days ago I noticed the container showed some new growth. Maybe next year.

This evening I discovered 2 more chrysalid, wooohoooo. 10 more 5th instars are either fasten silk, or already form a J-position awaiting pupation. The fresh MW cutting I provided this morning looking half full still. Today is the first day, I didn't have to cut new cutting in the evening hours.

Various pics. of the glass pillar house, the natural ventilation apparently works well. If I haven't mentioned, I lined the bottom of the cage with absorbing paper towels, that help me keep the spillage in check, easy to clean up. Also I've florescent light in the area to mimic natural sun light outdoor for the cats. I hope that will help some newbies finding butterfly gardening a rewarding hobby.

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Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Last evening, I had 3 more larvae that turned into pumpkins. Just kidding, the 5th instars 'morphed' into chrysalid. So now I've roungly 4 chrysalid, ten 5th instars that ceased their munching. Several more still eat like usual, plus I found another 5th instar from my MW patch this early morning.

N.A.N. I just wanted to thank you. You inspired me to try to keep up with the modern day technology. I just finished my Window 10 instalation, and now I'm on it and navegating my way around the hyperspace, unaided. lol I still have a lot to learn -- like I've been learning about butterflies gardening. Thanks everyone. We indeed have a great community here at DG.

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Algonquin, IL(Zone 5a)

Kim, I've been reading more about Poke Milkweed and it's native environment seems to be woodland areas...I'm so excited to try it, but right now everyone seems to be out of stock. I'll keep checking.

Everwilde Farms is one of the nurseries that carries the seed and if you scroll down to the bottom of the page it shows that it's native all over the Eastern U.S.


I love your last set of pics, especially that terrific shot of your Pillar House! It really explains so much by seeing the entire house. I'm amazed that you have chrysalid attached right to the glass.

Congrats on all the new activity!

Wow, you installed Windows 10? We keep getting reminders, but I've been afraid to try it. Have you had any problems? (I know, I know...this is the wrong forum) Once I got used to Windows 8 I loved it and we were literally forced by Microsoft to upgrade to 8.1. As soon as Windows 10 became available they made 8.1 an automatic upgrade, just like a normal update. I don't particularly like 8.1. It eliminated all the things I liked about 8. I'd love to hear more about your opinion of 10, but we probably shouldn't use this forum to discuss it.

Thanks for taking the time to update all your BF progress. It's super-exciting!

This message was edited Sep 19, 2015 10:43 AM

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

:) NAN. I know everyone who's watching this thread will find this a treat. Ready? BRB with the pic. As of now I've a dozen chrysalid, and....
Picture will tell a thousand words. I'm tired, and can't type no longer. It has been a great day! I'm just ready to retire. :))

Pic will be download from my phone next.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Enjoy the pictures everyone, have a question? Ask away, I will be back tomorrow and answer any question you may have. Happy butterfly gardening.

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Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Before bed, I found my only survival Sulphur eclosed. It was so beautiful, one I've tried to chase in the garden for a pix for years....
Ivy, was it a Sleepy Orange Sulphur that you've mentioned. Picture really doesn't do it justice really! No pix because I was so excited, partially I was so sleepy, partially because I couldn't wait to release it to the outdoor and lets it go -- spread its wings. But, it's not a total loss; I asked my DH to get some photos, as well as a video clip to share it with my grandchild/children in my Golden Years', DH was asked to take a small clip of video of the beauty. I may post that on Google + to share with the public.

Sleepy Orange, pondering if I should change my moniker here on DG to Sleepy Orange since I discovered the tiny beauty when I was so tired, sleepy and near exhaustion. TOL (
TOL = thinking out loud).

Pix of a butterfly on "Butterfly Bush" around this time last year in the garden. New pictures will be downloaded directly from my camera later. Have a great day everyone!

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Central, AL(Zone 7b)

....In the garden, yes. But it wasn't mine, lol, it was probably at a nursery this time last year. The problem with down loading pix from "thumbnail version", I couldn't see them "As IS". ((;

Algonquin, IL(Zone 5a)

OMG that's amazing!! They're attached everywhere! Kim, that is soooo cool! Thank You for posting all those pics last night. I know you were tired.

Are you posting any of these fantastic pics to BugFiles? I know they already have lots of pics, but I doubt if anyone has posted one with a dozen chrysalid or all those cats!

Wow...I bet you're absolutely giddy with excitement!

Congrats on the Sulphur! Hopefully your husband got some pics and/or videos.
Sleepy Orange...haha...that's cute. I like it, but then no one would know who you are.

I probably do have questions, but I'll have to come back later and ask.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

Ah, I'm having a technical problem with my Window 10 version. I can't seem to upload my photos from yesterday. I'll check into DG's community forum regarding computers issues for help. NAN. Looks as if this is it for me, on this thread for now, until I gain more knowledge on how to solve some of these problems.

Once I feel I have gained enough understanding of the system, I'll return and upload some of the pics. as you've requested.

I still don't know why, sometime when I upload my pics. from my phone, one time the photos will be upright, the next time they will be shown sideway?

Anna, IL(Zone 6b)

Found these little guys in my garden today. There was a big variety of butterfly, but these were the only ones that paused long enough for a photoshot. Beautiful day here.

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Barling, AR(Zone 7b)

Brendak, nice variety of critters and I love the flowers. Truly, plant it and they well come.

Lily, wow that's a lot of chrysalis and future Monarchs. By the way, Sleepy Orange gets its common name from the orange on the forewing and the "sleepy little girl" on the hindwing.
To get oriented to see the little girl, the orange forewing is the hair and on the hindwing below is a single spot which is one eye and opposite is a brown slash (sleepy eye) and toward wing tip are two dots (nostrils).

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Anna, IL(Zone 6b)

Yes - Plant it, and they will come. They sure do.

I have to pay more attention to the sulphurs - most interesting.

Central, AL(Zone 7b)

brendak654, Those charming 'Sleepy Orange' especially, when their wings are open, the dark borders, on the outer wings contrast beautifully with the rest of their beautiful bright orange color.

Ivy, I'm still dis-oriented, thus unable to orient myself to visualize the "little girl" image. Hopefully one of these days I will? Thanks for sharing.

Folks, I'm still having problem uploading my photos into the pc, as of now I've only two Monarch 5th instars awaiting pupation. No more Monarch are seen outdoor in the garden, however. I still have a lot tropical Milkweed for more Larvae, y'all up North need to send more Monarch down my way, please. Since Friday, I did not have to take any more cutting to feed the cats.

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