Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Orange in the Garden: Gulf Fritillaries and Tithonia
Gulf Fritillary (Agraulis vanillae) and Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia rotunifolia)
Tithonia seeds were sprinkled in many spots around the garden. Some have made compact plants. Some grew to 6 feet tall, requiring a stake to remain upright.
Gulf Fritillaries nectar here on many other flowers, including blue porterweed, zinnias of all colors and Pride of Barbados, in the garden, but Tithonia is definitely a favorite.
The host plant for Gulf Frit caterpillars is passion vine, growing not in the garden here but nearby at woods edge, intertwined here with wild muscadine vines.
Flamboyant orange radiates warmth and energy. Terra cotta, peach or apricot are usually more acceptable in more restrained gardens than mine.