Monday, September 9, 2013

American Painted Ladies: Vanessa virginiensis

One of the true brushfoot butterflies, Vanessa virginiensis the American Painted Lady has shown up again in my garden.


When I went to the wild gardens, Rabbit Tobacco was in evidence, about to bloom, one of the everlastings on which female American Painted Ladies lay eggs. I picked a leaf to crush and sniff the resinous fragrance. 

On the right you can see the wad of foliage where a pupa is.

You can read more about Rabbit Tobacco here: Tea with Peter Rabbit, a post I wrote in 2009.



Red Porterweed grown from a seedling.

I was thinking about the name of my blog, Secrets of a Seedscatterer. I wonder if I mention growing plants from seeds often enough?  The Stachytarpheta jamaicensis above grew from seeds last summer. I transplanted two Porterweed plants into small pots to keep over the winter and plant out in spring for the delight of butterflies.  A big self-seeded Tithonia plant grew up between the Porterweeds so they form a butterfly buffet. 



5 comments:

  1. I don't think I've ever seen a porterweed! How pretty! The butterfly looks like it was happy to find your garden. It looks so pretty against that red bloom.

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  2. Reading about Rabbit Tobacco brings back some sweet childhood memories. We used to smoke it! I have found it in various places on the farm but haven't seen any lately. Usually I smell it before I realize what it is.

    Beautiful, clear shots of the butterflies and the gorgeous red flower.

    I would enjoy more about your seed raising adventures and the greenhouse.

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  3. For those of us who follow you, you do mention it...or from cuttings...I rarely here you purchasing flowers or plants..I am sure you do but I can't recall you ever mentioning purchase..so I think you it's appropriate name...and lives up the title.

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  4. Most of the time when I buy a plant, it is to use as a source for making cuttings, like the Mistletoe Cactus and Burro Tail Sedum I bought last spring, or something too complicated from seed, like the two orchids I bought last winter. After the orchid I had finally rebloomed I was convinced that I might could keep another one or two.

    I recently ordered off for Hyacinth bulbs and 3 Amaryllis bulbs to force for winter bloom.

    Joy for me is in the growing.

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  5. Yes, this does look like the butterfly in the photo. I wish Tithonia would self sow here. I got my seeds in a little late, and the 4 plants I have started blooming at 2 feet tall, and are now about 3 feet tall.

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I look forward to comments and questions and lively discussion of gardening and related ideas.



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