At Terra Outdoor Living love for the outdoors is in our DNA. We strive to ensure our products and business practices reflect our respect for the planet and all its creatures. We are proud to say our associates embody these values in their everyday lives.

Today we highlight team member Denise Deiro Chagas, who has a passion for propagating butterfly-friendly gardens in Mill Valley.

Denise’s Easy Steps to Growing a Backyard Butterfly Habitat

The butterfly season here is around June-July-August, there’s still time to plant the flowers, but I suggest we start now!

Sprout Milkweed

Butterflies will be attracted to milkweed to lay eggs. Caterpillars only eat milkweed leaves while gaining weight to turn into chrysalises. You can find milkweed at local nurseries or grow it from seed yourself. Denise sprouts hers in egg cartons.

milkweed sprouts

Grow Pollen-Rich Plants

After emerging from their cocoons, butterflies will need to snack on pollen. Denise recommends zinnias, cosmos, calendula, yarrow, oregano, aster, bee balm, verbena, coneflower, borage, and lavender. There should also be a bird bath nearby for water.

Register Your Habitat

Monarch Waystations are places that provide resources necessary for monarchs to produce successive generations and sustain their migration. Even small spaces can be certified as a monarch sanctuary. Learn more and register your habitat at:

woman holding milkweed sprouts

The population of monarch butterflies has dropped drastically in the past years due to cutting down milkweed plants and pesticides. Let’s give this endangered pollinator species a hand. Your yard can become a haven for our precious pollinators.