Butterfly Garden Plants

Garden Plant Ratings Explained
The following groups of plants have been selected and rated by NABA members as important native plants for butterfly gardening. Be sure to check NABA’s  Regional Butterfly Garden Guide to learn which plants are best suited for regional butterfly gardens.

While all of the plants in NABA’s Butterfly Garden Guide are useful for butterfly gardens, NABA members have been asked to rate plants with which they are familiar. The charts that accompany each plant are an average of the ratings received to date.

Ratings reflect the following considerations:

NABA Caterpillar Food Source Rating*Possible reasons would be that it is not the preferred food plant or because, as in the case of Round-leaved Ragwort, the butterfly species that prefers the plant as a food source (in this case, Northern Metalmark) is rare and very localized and it is unlikely that there is a population near your garden.


Butterfly Nectar Value*Only weakly attractive to butterflies or only attractive for a very short time.
**Moderately attractive to many butterflies or very attractive to a few species.


NABA Garden/Ornamental Value RatingGarden value considers length of bloom period, adaptability to a wide range of settings, ease of growing and maintaining.