Killing Plants-Watering Wednesdays:

The Pretty, the Ugly, & the Useful

Not a giant orb spider

Last week we discussed the GIANT golden orb spider near my dogwood. It’s still there, I’ve checked. Unfortunately, I have also found 2 other ones. They seem to be a good deterrent in keeping the kids (&me) and out of the woods.

Obviously spiders are useful, they catch all sorts of bugs and flies in their woven webs — even if they aren’t the prettiest, cuddliest creatures. They have a function and they tend to do it well.

But what is the function of butterflies?

They are pretty, sure. But what is their actual purpose? Turns out, they have a few. One-to be pretty. Every one likes to look around this world and see something pretty, non-man made. The bright colors, the fluttery wings as they twitch atop flowers, and the flowers that draw them make for some pretty landscape…unless you have squirrels.

I filled my bird feeder and planted a half bag of mixed butterfly garden seed below, but when the squirrels attacked my bird feeder, they spilled all the seed in my garden and instead of an array of lovely flowers, I got a ton of weeds.

Now since I’m new to all this gardening stuff, I’m not a 100% sure what’s a weed and what’s a growing flower. That means I had to wait for the plants to mature before weeding. Or in other words, I got lazy, refused to deal with it, and finally after 3 months decided to clean it up.

It was a process. A process not helped by my furry pup who thinks it’s a game to snatch a mouthful of weeds and dance over the lawn with them.

Yep, this guy

It looks soooo much better, a bit scraggly, but I think all the weeds choked out the flowers that should have been growing.

Sorry for getting off topic-the usefulness of butterflies. I actually had to google the information because I knew they were pretty and they help carry pollen from plant to plant which makes fruits, vegetables, and flowers produce new seeds. But is there something else?

Yes!

No surprise they are delicate creatures, right? Their delicateness makes them an indicator species. What’s that? Their presence indicates a healthy environment because they are sensitive to changes in climate, air/water pollution, and the presence of harmful chemicals.

TIP: If you see lots of butterflies where you live, breathe deeply. Otherwise, maybe invest in a gas mask and water purifier.