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Seeds

$5 packet (includes P&P) - NZ residents only

Butterfly Nectar Mix

Butterfly garden

These seeds are a blend of wildflowers (annuals) which will provide nectar for butterflies and bees, and a block of mixed colour in your garden.

Incarnata 16 G Stell (2021_11_06 06_37_44 UTC)

Asclepias incarnata, Swamp Milkweed, originated in America. There are two varieties – one has white flowers, one has pink flowers. We only have the variety with pink flowers.

Swamp Milkweed is not affected by frost over winter and once established will provide good supplies of feed in the early part of the season while you are getting your swan plant seedlings up to a reasonable size. But the plant may not be suitable as your sole source of food for monarch caterpillars as it loses its leaves before the last of the caterpillars have finished feeding.

The plants can be propagated either by seed or by division of the root mass of a mature plant. Plant seed as soon as possible into seedling pots or seed trays – and then prick seedlings out into larger pots when they have 2-3 true leaves. First year plants will normally only have a single stem but in following years will produce multiple stems as the roots develop. Light browsing by caterpillars is okay in the first year but ensure that there is a reasonable amount of foliage retained to enable the plant to develop a strong healthy root mass.

In late autumn the plant will lose its leaves and stems will die back. It is not dead; just mark the spot with a stake and wait for new shoots to come up in the spring. If the seedling appears to die when planted out into its permanent position do not be hasty in replacing it. In most cases you will find it will resprout.

Contains 20-30 seeds.

Curassavica scarlet with monarchs Gary Stell cropped (2020_12_26 06_04_02 UTC) Curassavicay2 G Stell cropped (2020_12_26 06_04_02 UTC)

Asclepias curassavica or Tropical Milkweed is a native milkweed from America. Monarchs will lay eggs on it – and it makes an attractive addition to the garden, very popular as a nectar source. 20-30 seeds in a packet.

There are two varieties available, Gold (with yellow petals and centres) or Scarlet (scarlet-orange petals, gold centres). Sometimes referred to as ‘bloodflower’.

Sow directly in the garden when soil is warmer. For earlier sowings use seed mix in egg cartons (or similar) and cover with a light sprinkling of topsoil. Keep moist and warm. Transplant when seedlings are 5-10 cm tall.

 

Gomphocarpus physocarpus or the ‘giant swan plant‘. More robust, and more resistant to the onslaught of the caterpillars, much more resilient than the swan plant (G. fruticosus). When identifying the two plants, the main difference is that the seedpod of G. physocarpus is not swan-shaped (although it’s often called the giant swan plant) but has round seedpods. The leaves are shorter and wider, and the plant will grow to 2-4 metres, whereas the swan plant reaches 1-2 metres.

Sow directly in the garden when soil is warmer. For earlier sowings use seed mix in egg cartons (or similar) and cover with a light sprinkling of topsoil. Keep moist and warm. Transplant when seedlings are 5-10 cm tall.

The seeds USED to be classified as Asclepias physocarpa and A. fruticosa, but the plants were reclassified in 2001 as part of the African family of milkweed, Gomphocarpus.

 

Urtica sykesii  CURRENTLY OUT OF STOCK

U. sykesii (was U. incisa), or Pureora, scrub nettle, host plant for red and yellow admiral butterflies. It is native to New Zealand and SE Australia.

U. sykesii dies back during the winter and regenerates again in spring. Height variously reported between 400 mm and 2 m. Leaves 50-120 mm. Likes shade or mild sun and a sheltered spot. 40-50 seeds.

 

Urtica australis CURRENTLY OUT OF STOCK

It is a host plant for red and yellow admiral butterflies, endemic to the SW Fiordland Coast, and subantarctic islands including Stewart island and Chatham Islands. U. australis forms dense bushes up to 1 m by 1 m. Semi-succulent, leaves can be 200 mm diameter.

 

Liatris spicata (2021_06_16 21_41_33 UTC)

Liatris spicata, Blazing Star or Gayfeather, is a perennial in the sunflower/daisy family. Native to North America, it grows in moist prairies and meadows. Tall spikes of purple flowers resemble bottlebrushes/feathers up to 2 metres tall. Loved by bees and butterflies. 20-30 seeds.

 

08 09 Monarch on Joe Pye Weed Swallowtail Garden Seeds Flickr

Eutrochium purpureum, Joe Pye weed, is a perennial in the aster family. Native to North America, Joe Pye Weed grows well in damp settings and has many pale pink to purple flowers. Will grow to 1 - 2.5 metres tall. Loved by butterflies. 20-30 seeds.

 

16 Tweedia 6

Oxypetalum caeruleum has stunning sky blue, star-shaped flowers. Native to South America, it can be grown as an annual or perennial. Prefers full sun and moist soils. It is said to be an alternative host plant for the monarch but as it is slow-growing and monarchs are not keen to lay on it, it is better kept as a nectar source and a bright addition to the garden. 20-30 seeds.

 

Snail Vine secondary

Vigna caracalla (snail vine), is an attractive evergreen vine. This beautiful tropical vine, with lavender and white flowers, is native to Central and South America and thrives in full sun and high humidity.

It is also known as a snail bean or corkscrew plant and makes a very pretty addition in a hanging basket or container, where it will dangle up to 14.5 m if permitted. A member of the pea family, it will play host to the long-tailed blue butterfly, Lampides boeticus.

Growing this vine from seed is relatively easy as long as you plant the seed in full sun and loamy, moist, and slightly acidic soil. Soaking seeds overnight in warm water will aid germination. They can be directly sown outdoors in suitable climates or you can also start seeds early inside, in cooler regions. Be sure that the indoor temperature is no cooler than 22 C. Keep the seeds damp and in indirect light. Transplant as soon as the ground warms outside or grow them in containers year round.

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