Do You Know About Flowers That Look Like Butterflies? Here Are Some | Kidadl


Do You Know About Flowers That Look Like Butterflies? Here Are Some

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Plants with rewards and beautiful flowers are a great addition to our garden.

The vibrant colors and refreshing fragrance of the flowers will make our garden pleasant. They also create a beautiful aura and add beauty to the place.

Flowers beautify our garden or a bouquet and have many aesthetic qualities that have been actually known to improve the overall quality of our life. Their varied fragrance, shape, and colors have inspired many artists for their creative thinking in their art forms. They also have the power to reduce anxiety and stress.

Some flowers also have medicinal importance. A variety of flowers are used in the preparation of medicines. For instance, the lotus flower is used in preparing medicines that can cure fever, diarrhea, and cough. Different kinds of flowers are used in making perfumes, even for making many beauty products such as jasmine oil, rosewater, etc. Flowers also attract butterflies and hummingbirds. They both have mutual benefits, such as flowers providing food to them in the form of nectar, and in turn, they help in pollination as they travel from plant to plant.

Butterflies are not just graceful insects that make our world more colorful but also beneficial to our environment. A butterfly symbolizes rebirth, hope, positivity, and resurrection, and it also symbolizes transformation and freedom. Their presence represents a hopeful or joyous sign. They act as natural pest control and help with pollination. Butterflies are also a vital part of the food chain. A butterfly is a delicate creature and sensitive to change. Thus, they warn about the health of our ecosystem. These creatures primarily seek out flowers for nectar throughout their life. They mainly rely on nectar-filled flowers that are yellow, orange, purple, or pink because they are sensitive to UV light and use color vision while searching for food. So, what flowers attract butterflies? Keep scrolling to get more insights!

Also, check out our other interesting articles on flowers in the amazon rainforest and flowers in the tropical rainforest. Here on Kidadl.

How to grow flowers that look like butterflies?

There are different varieties of plants whose flowers look like colorful butterflies that undoubtedly light up your garden. Let us see below some of the plants that produce unique-looking butterfly-like flowers.

Whirling butterfly plant: Incredibly pretty Gaura lindheimeri is an amazing perennial plant native to Mexico. They produce four-petaled flowers resembling the wings of a butterfly. These butterfly-like flowers are commonly called 'Whirling butterfly,' 'Indian feather,' 'Lindheimer's beeblossom,' and 'butterfly gaura.'

The Gaura lindheimeri is a perennial herbaceous plant that grows 20-60 in (50-150 cm) tall. The flowers produced are 1-1.5 in (2-3 cm) in diameter and 0.3-0.5 in (10-15 mm) long. The flowers are white or pink, which emerge from rose-colored buds of long, wiry stems and then slowly fade to pink. These perennial flowers open in small groups, bloom from the beginning of the spring through autumn, and are ideal for attracting bees, butterflies to the garden. These are commonly grown as ornamental plants in either garden beds or pots. While some of the species in the same genus are invasive weeds. The butterfly plant needs fertile and well-drained soil enriched with a mixture of compost. They grow best in full sun and can also tolerate long dry periods. It is easy to care for and grow these plants.

Blue butterfly bush: This wonderful plant, scientifically called Clerodendrum ugandense, is native to tropical regions of East Africa (Uganda and Kenya). It is commonly nicknamed Blue Glorybower, Cambridge Bush, and Oxford Bush. These butterfly plants got the name as they produce large clusters of two-toned blue flowers that highly resemble a flock of tiny butterflies around the plant. The flowers of these Blue butterfly bush bloom from summer through fall. They have four lobes, one violet-blue and three pale blue that resemble the butterfly wings. These tall tropical shrubs feature glossy, green oblong leaves and long, arching branches. The Blue butterfly bush requires enough light and warmth to flower. During summer, it flowers heavily, and it might rarely bloom in the wintertime. They are easy to grow plants with no high requirements and easily pruned. The Blue butterfly bush should be planted in the land which gets full sun to partial shade. During the hot summer, they need consistent moisture. However, in winter, especially in the coastal region, you can give less water to avoid crown rot problems. It is a home plant that easily propagates from the stem or root cuttings and can be grown in the ground or in a pot. Make sure to prune the plant at any time to keep it neat and also to promote flowering.

Butterfly orchid: The most intricate butterfly orchid is scientifically known as Encyclia tampensis and is a species of flowering plant that belongs to the orchid family. This plant is native to Florida and is abundantly found in Cuba, the Bahamas along the waterways. In their native habitat, the Butterfly orchid is an epiphyte slow-growing orchid that grows on the branches and trunks of a wide variety of trees, including buttonwood, red maple, gum, live oak, bald cypress, pond apple, and pop ash. Its flowers are large with almost antenna-like petals, which appear like a butterfly. These orchid flowers bloom from spring through fall at the end of a tall, thin stalk. The flowers are usually orange, yellow, copper, green and brown, with a white lip with a catchy purple spot or stripe in the center. The unique-looking Butterfly orchids are generally a hardy genus of orchids. However, when grown in the right conditions, they can be well-adapted to indoor growing. These flowers bloom the entire year at regular intervals, and unlike other species, they do not need a defined rest period to stimulate flowering. The Butterfly orchids require bright, light shade sunlight and grow best in a soil mixture of balanced fertilizer, organic matter, bark. They thrive well in humid and warm conditions but cannot tolerate direct sun.

Sword lily: It is scientifically known as Gladiolus teretifolius. The graceful flowers of these plants are elegant and bright red. The gladiolus is a perennial herbaceous plant whose flowers are in full bloom for a week but are not fragrant. Their flowers are zygomorphic that are creating their resemblance to butterflies.

Butterfly flowers: also called Schizanthus pinnatus are bushy half-hardy annuals. It is called a butterfly flower because its double-lipped, orchid-like flowers look similar to a butterfly. These flowers bloom from spring to autumn.

Plenty of other beautiful plants produce butterfly-like flowers such as Cyclamen persicum, Salvia, Lobelia erinus, Butterfly pea (Clitoria ternatea), etc. For growing, most of these plants require fertile and well-drained potting soil, a balanced fertilizer, and regular watering to maintain the moisture in the soil evenly.


Butterflies absolutely love certain flowers to be around. Therefore, to attract butterflies and make your garden butterfly-friendly, you need to understand what they need the most. What flower features and characteristics attract them?

Flowering perennials attract butterflies the most. Therefore, to allure butterflies to your gardens, these plants must be planted. Including a host plant in your garden serve as food for caterpillars and nectar plants for adult butterflies. Gardeners have a wide variety of host plants for butterflies to plant in their small gardens. Thus, it is important to choose native plants rich in nectar and beneficial for butterflies. Features like the plant type and flower with bright color petals are more vital in creating a butterfly garden. Red, orange, purple, yellow, and pink blossoms that are clustered or flat-topped are a butterfly's favorite. To build a butterfly garden, plant with native flowering in your geographical area, and good nectar sources are to be mainly planted. Plants like milkweed, violets, asters act as butterfly host plants. Here is a list of the best plants that are popular with gardeners whose bright flowers attract butterflies for nectar sources. Some of these plant species are also beneficial for butterflies as the host plant.

Butterfly bush: The colorful butterfly bush (Buddleja), commonly known as summer lilac, is the best plant in a butterfly garden. A variety of butterfly species, including clouded sulfur, orange sulfur, monarch, painted lady, spring, and summer azure, are attracted to these perennials.

The Butterfly bush is a rapidly-growing plant that blooms from summer to fall. Their flower comes in lovely colors of violet, yellow, red, pink, white, lavender, and purple. These plants need full sun, fertile soil, and sufficient water. Prune the bushes to encourage more bloom and mulch the plant for protection in winter. In spring, give them fresh mulch and compost.

Beebalm: They are perennial plants that add cheerful color to your garden. They produce daisy-like flowers with tubular petals in purple, red, and white shades.

Coneflower: These plants are well-known perennials that belong to the daisy family and can be planted anywhere. They are easy to grow, and their cultivars attract the most butterflies and pollinators.

False Shamrock: Its botanical name is Oxalis triangularis and is a species of a perennial plant native to many countries in Southern America. It is commonly called purple shamrock with three heart-shaped purple leaves looking like butterfly wings. It is a popular ornamental plant that blooms white trumpet-shaped flowers during summer and spring.

Angelica: Butterflies also like this coarse leaf plant that belongs to the carrot family. Plants like fennel, pine, white douglas, parsley, fir, pine, hemlock are also a butterfly's favorite list.

Marigolds and cannas are a perfect addition to any garden. Marigold's bright-colored flower attracts most butterflies all season long while cannas shoot up red, yellow, salmon, orange, or bi-colored flowers from mid-summer through fall.

There are many other beautiful butterfly-attracting plants, including the pansy, aster, verbena, goldenrod, daisy, stonecrop, lantana, pot marigolds, bluestar, blazingstar flowers, cornflower, buttonbush, and baptisia.


The flower's shape also plays a vital role in attracting pollinators like butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds. Their form is evolved to fulfill different functions. The different shapes of flowers are not just beautiful but are also functional and have various benefits.

The various flower shapes and colorful petals provide visual clues to pollinators like butterflies and attract them to come in contact with the flower's anthers and stigmas when in search of food or shelter. This provides butterflies to transfer pollen grains while collecting nectar from flower to flower and helps in the successful pollination of the plant to produce seed. The butterflies or pollinators also benefit as the flowers provide them food in the form of nectar and pollen.

The flower shape also tricks the insects through pseudocopulation, which means that male insects seek to mate with the flowers thinking of them as females of the same species. Thus the flowers are unintentionally pollinated.

There are also many benefits in growing butterfly plants because some of these plants are herbaceous such as bee balm, which is used to remedy various health ailments like sore throats, digestive issues, bloating, and nausea. It is also used as a natural antiseptic to help with minor wounds, bee stings, and rashes. The butterfly pea is rich in antioxidants and used in many drinks, herbal teas, and cosmetic products. It helps reduce anxiety and weight and helps control blood sugar control, improving hair and skin health. The purple coneflower is also used in herbal teas and is known to strengthen the immune system. Similarly, there are other benefits of butterfly plants, like they aid in conserving butterflies as well as other native pollinators and help conserve native plant species.

Flowers that look like butterflies have their own advantages.

Interesting Facts On Flowers That Look Like Butterflies

Plants and butterflies share a symbiotic relationship because they both are dependent on each other for their survival. Plants provide food and shelter to caterpillars and butterflies, while butterflies assist in the pollination of flowering plants and ease their reproduction. Above sections, we have discussed the flowers that resemble butterflies, let us now have a little peek into a few interesting facts about them.

Did you know that it is illegal to collect butterfly orchids from the wild in the US, though they are abundantly present in Florida?

Another interesting fact is despite the name, the butterfly bush is not a butterfly host plant! It only provides nectar to adult butterflies and does not support caterpillars or butterfly reproduction. So, if you have a butterfly bush in your garden, make sure to add some native host plants if you want the butterflies to stay, like aster, bee balm, milkweed, and dill.

In some whirling butterfly plants, the flower petals are white at dawn, and then they turn pink before falling off at dusk. This plant has gained the Garden Merit award from the Royal Horticultural Society.

Blue butterfly bush has the habit of open-airy growth and thus can potentially grow up to 10 ft (305 cm) tall and 6 ft (183 cm) wide.

The long-lasting flowers of the butterfly bush are favored for their pleasant fruity fragrance.

Although eye-catching for butterflies and other pollinators, the butterfly bush is prohibited for sale and commercial cultivation in some states because it is considered an invasive species that can damage the health of our ecosystems.

The false shamrock plant's leaves close at night and again open during the day.

The showy bright red flowers of Gladiolus teretifolius are edible.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for Do you know about flowers that look like butterflies? Here are Some, then why not take a look at do pine trees have flowers? Or do all plants have flowers?

Written By
Sridevi Tolety

<p>With a Master's degree in clinical research from Manipal University and a PG Diploma in journalism from Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan, Sridevi has cultivated her passion for writing across various domains. She has authored a wide range of articles, blogs, travelogues, creative content, and short stories that have been published in leading magazines, newspapers, and websites. Sridevi is fluent in four languages and enjoys spending her spare time with loved ones. Her hobbies include reading, traveling, cooking, painting, and listening to music.</p>

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