We like butterflies.


In July 2015, we did a butterfly count, just for one hour, in the community garden and found none! But we found a few more in the main park, mostly on buddleia:

  • '3 large whites, 1 brimstone, 1 marbled white (our favourite - see the photo), 2 gatekeepers, maybe a meadow brown and one peacock'

We had spotted a Holly blue in the garden a few days beforehand so we are not butterfly-free just unlucky.

On 3 an 4 July 2015, Guy Belcher identified: cabbage white, meadow brown butterflies and lots of moths (see moth page).

In 016, we will repeat the Big Butterfly Count - there are different species to spot this year.

Plants for butterflies

Fortunately, the plants butterflies like are also very popular with our garden visitors - so we need to get planting! We have at least one buddleia in the garden already. We have a list of at least 100 plants to choose from too.

Good nectar plants include aubretia, birds-foot trefoil, blackthorn, buddliea, bugle (have some on order), candy tuff, cornflower (lots on meadow mixes), dandelion (in grass), forget-me-not (will move some in), hebe, heliotrope, honesty, ladies smock, lavendar, marjoram, Michaelmas daisy, phlox, primrose (we have these), ragwort, rockrose, scabious (lots in meadow mix), sweet william, thistle (lots in meadow), violets, wallflower

Plants for caterpillars

  • Buckthorn: brimstone
  • Birds-foot trefoil: common blue (we have both of these)
  • Cabbage: white butterflies (lots on local allotments!)
  • Dock: small copper (we have these)
  • Grasses: small and large skipper, meadow brown, gatekeeper (lots of these)
  • Honesty, lady's smock: orange tip, green-beined white
  • Nasturtium: white butterflies
  • Nettles: small tortoisehell, red admiral, peacock - some of these
  • Holy, ivy: holly blue
  • Ragwort - cinnabar moth - we have lots of this
  • Thistles: - painted lady - we have thistles galore.

Useful links:

See the new Cambridge Wild webpage for useful links.

Last updated: 1 February 2017