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Butterfly Gardening Blog

Welcome! This blog is mostly about butterfly gardening, but other types of plants and gardens, as well as other wildlife is blogged about too.

February 18, 2009

Butterflies in the Virgin Islands! (Part 3)

Filed under: Butterflies — Butterflygirl @ 4:36 pm

I mentioned last time that Carmen, who works at The Butterfly Farm at St. Thomas, very patiently showed me around and answered all of the questions I had about the host plants they had growing in their outside butterfly garden.

They had the following milkweed plant growing there – I don’t know what species it is though – anyone know?

Here’s the whole plant from a distance – notice the cruise ship in the background! The Butterfly Farm is right by the Cruise Ship Dock at Havensight Mall:

I saw a Monarch on another milkweed and couldn’t help but notice that it looks very different from the ones in my garden. In fact, I even wondered if it was actually a Monarch. I believe Queens and Soldiers have 3 sets of filaments though. I can’t imagine what else it would be. Does anyone know why it looks so different from the ones around the St. Louis area?

Virgin Islands Monarch caterpillar:

A picture of one of mine:

They also had a pipevine growing for the Polydamas Swallowtail (Battus polydamas), although there were no caterpillars on it. The pipevine had not been growing for long though, The Butterfly Farm has only been there a year or so. It took around 4 years before any Pipevine Swallowtails laid eggs on my pipevine.

Does anyone know what species of Aristolochia this is:

Next week – more host plants from The Butterfly Farm!

One Response to 'Butterflies in the Virgin Islands! (Part 3)'

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  1. Carmen said,

    on March 8th, 2009 at 4:05 pm

    Hi Trisha!
    I don’t know if you’ve already had your questions answered, but here is what I have to offer (better late than never, I suppose):
    The milkweed species is Asclepias tuberosa; different varieties of the same species of butterfly might look a bit different, as well as the caterpillar; and the vine is Aristolochia trilobata… Very happy to share that we now have three Aristolochia grandiflora plants growing as well! No caterpillars yet, though.

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