Oklahoma Butterfly Gardens

Butterflies are easy to attract to your Oklahoma garden or landscape. Providing groups ofImageForGardenTour2plants that offer nectar (food for adults) and hosting (food for caterpillars) will lead to masses of butterflies happy to delight you with their beauty. Larger groups of plants make it easier for butterflies to locate your garden from the air. Here are a few of their favorites:

Host plants:

Passionflower vine (Gulf Fritillary)
Milkweed(s) (Monarch and Queens butterflies)
Parsley (Black Swallowtail)
Pipevine (Pipevine swallowtail)
* Be prepared for heavy munching on these plants – they are caterpillar food!

Annual Nectar Plants:

Tithonia (Mexican Sunflowers)img_4005Cosmos
Tropical Milkweed
* Many of these are easy to plant from seed.

Perennial Nectar Plants:

Perennial Lantana
Mistflower (s)
Purple Coneflowers
Black Eyed Susan
Salvia (s)img_3912Oregano
Butterfly Bush (Buddleia)

A critical reminder: Never use insecticides in your garden – butterflies are an insect species.

Where to get plants? In Oklahoma City, some great vendors are:

Wild Things Nursery

Prairie Wind Nursery

Bustani Plant Farm

TLC Garden Centers

A lovely source for seeds is Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds.



Butterfly Garden Tour – Save the Date

Explore eight diverse gardens and landscapes during
this free, self-guided tour around central-northwest Oklahoma City. From the modern Pipevine Swallow tail DSCF1952formal to the xeric perennial border to the rustic urban homestead, there will be something for everyone to enjoy.

Get inspired to attract these beautiful creatures to your own garden, plus ask plant questions of local experts and purchase native and prairie garden perennials from local growers!

What:    Free self-guided Butterfly Garden Tour
Where:  Eight sites in central-northwest Oklahoma City
When:   Sunday September 25, 10 am – 3 pm (Rain date of Sunday October 2)
Check out the Butterfly Garden Tour link for details on all the sites.

Thanks to our sponsors:

onps Logo      SC Logo_Horiz Web Green      Myriad Garden Logo       UACOKC-logo-mech-rgb



Pollinator Projects 2016


Pollinator Pals Workshop @ SixTwelve

Feb. 20, 2016, 1 – 2:30 PMIMG_0897
$5 Members / $15 Non-members
Learn more and Register at SixTwelve.org

OK Garden School – Focus on Prairie Garden and Pollinators

March 12, 2016
Myriad Botanical Gardens

Pollinator Program

March 17, 2016, 7 pm
Sierra Club Cimarron Group Meeting
@ SixTwelve – 612 NW 29th St.
Facebook: Oklahoma Cimarron Sierra Club

Plant Your Own Pollinator ParadiseSean May 2008 026

Saturday, March 26, 10 am – noon
$20 includes choice of 2 pollinator plants + handouts
Additional plants will be available for sale
CommonWealth Urban Farms, 3310 N. Olie, OKC
Availability limited, register at CommonWealthUrbanFarms.com

Planting Monarch Waystation at Martin Nature Park Center

Mid-spring, 2016
Oklahoma Native Plant Society & Wild Things Nursery
For more info contact: Marilyn@wildthingsnursery.com

Art Installation and Monarch Festival

April 1, June 24, September 24
Project Box, Myriad Gardens, OKC Zoo

Planting Milkweed and Crop Borders080

Spring / Summer 2016
Redlands Community College, El Reno
Ed Zweiacher, Royse Ranch Manager, zweiachere@redlandscc.edu

National Pollinator Week

June 19 – 25
Myriad Botanical Gardens

Prairie Patch

June 11, 2016
Prairie Wind Nursery, Norman, OK

Monarch Festival, OKC Zoo

Sept 24, 2016

Monarch Festival, Blanchard OK

Date TBD (Late September / Early October)


  1. Butterfly Garden, Oklahoma City ZooIMG_1318
  2. Prairie Garden, Myriad Botanical Gardens
  3. Children’s Pollinator Garden, Myriad Botanical Gardens
  4. Pursuit of Pollinators Garden, TLC Nursery (on Memorial)
  5. Pollinator Paradise CommonWealth Gardens 3310 N. Olie (Coming March 2016)
  6. Monarch Waystation, Martin Nature Park Center (Coming Spring 2016)
  7. Chesapeake Energy Employee Monarch Way Station – Warr Acres area (contact hhunter1111@gmail.com for more information)
  8. Pollinator Pocket Bed, Whiskey Cake restaurant in OKC
  9. Bee & Butterfly Garden, Kirkpatrick Family Farm, Yukon OK

2016: Year of the Pollinator

Our pollinators are struggling. Due to loss of habitat and widespread pesticide use, 100_5852populations of many of these beneficial insects, such as honeybees and butterflies, have declined – in some cases precipitously – in recent years. The Monarch butterfly population has plummeted almost 90% in the last twenty-five years. Bees, too, are suffering from Colony Collapse Disorder, with beekeepers regularly reporting losses of 30-40% of their colonies over the winter period.

We here in Oklahoma City can act individually and collectively to help our bees and butterflies, and in doing so, help ourselves. We need honeybees and other insects to pollinate our fruits, vegetables and nuts (and of course, produce delicious honey). But we treasure pollinators for less practical reasons, too – our world would mourn the loss of beauty if Monarch butterflies declined and disappeared.

Progress is on the horizon. Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett recently signed the National Wildlife Federation’s “Mayor’s Monarch Pledge” promising to support the monarch butterflies in their annual migration on their path to and from the mountains of Mexico. He joins a group of almost fifty mayors across the country who recognize that monarchs need our help, and who have pledged their support.

Also in 2015, the White House introduced “Plan Bee,” a strategy to protect pollinators, which will provide funding to plant and protect bee habitat and fund research into ways to protect bees from disease and the perils of pesticides.

Long-blooming butterfly weed hosts Monarch caterpillars

Locally, the Urban Ag Coalition and other non-profits and businesses are working together to ensure that we can enjoy the sight of the distinctive orange and black  Monarch butterflies during their migration for decades to come! We will be posting events, information and ideas on our Facebook page throughout the year about ways to support butterflies, bees, and other important native insects.

Join us there for our adventures throughout the Year of the Pollinator!


School Gardens as Outdoor Classrooms

Friday July 24th, 6 – 8 p.m. : Schools as Outdoor Classrooms

Teachers, educators, parents: are you ready to learn how school gardens can be used as outdoor classrooms – interactive places to experience, hands-on, math, science, social studies, even literMBG Children's Garden 1ature? Meet Kellie Karavias, nationally recognized educator, dubbed a “Food Hero” by Jamie Oliver, who will speak about her experiences in “School Gardens as Outdoor Classrooms” at the Myriad Gardens Terrace Room.

Register by July 20th. Cost: $5. Kellie’s presentation will be followed by a free reception.

Saturday July 25th, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Growing Great Minds: How to Engage your Students in the Garden

This professional development class offers the opportunity to explore the Junior Master Gardener curriculum, an award-winning, hands-on elementary school curriculum with activities and lessons aligned with Educational Standards. Shelley Mitchell, the Oklahoma JMG Coordinator, will teach the class. Teachers leave with four hours of continuing education credits as well as a full Junior Master Gardener curriculum.

Due to funding from our sponsors Sustainable OKC, Sierra Club and Kam’s Kookery, this $60 value class is available for only $10. Register now if interested, only a few spots are still available.


Presented by the Urban Ag Coalition of OKC, Myriad Botanical Gardens, and Sustainable OKC.

Myriad Garden Logo                  sokc_logoUACOKC-logo-mech-rgb                          

Special thanks to our sponsors Sierra Club and Kam’s Kookery, and our partners OKC Harvest, CommonWealth Urban Farms, and Closer to Earth.

                          SierraClub_vert_white_bg           Kam's logo

OKC Harvest OKCB Program Logo        CTELogo     commonwealth-logo-web

Adventures in Learning: School Garden Guide now available!

Teachers and educators, do you have a school garden? The Urban Ag Coalition is offering a new, free, school garden guide called “Adventures in Learning” to inspire ideas for getting your students out in the garden for interactive exploration and education. The Guide includes helpful semester-based garden activities and curriculum resources, as well as gardening information specific to our climate here in Oklahoma City.

Whiskey Cake

Research shows that leveraging your school garden as a learning resource has many benefits:

  • Significantly increase science achievement scores
  • Improve social skills and behavior
  • Instill appreciation and respect for nature
  • Improve life skills, including working with groups
  • Increase interest in eating fruits and vegetables
  • Increase consumption of fruits and vegetables in adolescents
  • Have a positive impact on student achievement and behavior

Source: KidsGardening.org

We hope you’ll take advantage of this new guide, “Adventures in Learning: A Teacher’s Guide to Exploration and Discovery in OKC School Gardens,” and have some fun!

Click the link to download the free guide, which includes the following information:

  • Oklahoma City Plants: Best Bets and Fun Choices
  • School Garden Year Activities
  • Growing Organically: Protecting the health of the garden
  • Curriculum Resources
  • Cross-Discipline Learning
  • Appendix A: Spring and Fall Planting Schedules


OKC’s first Urban Farm & Garden Tour

Lettuce seedlings in a Smart Pot container
Seedlings ready to plant at CommonWeatlth Urban Farm
Plants under protective row cover at CommonWealth Urban Farms
Brocolli, planted for the fall and mulched well with straw
Urban farms grow flowers too!
Tools of the trade at Regional Food Bank’s Urban Harvest
Urban Harvest’s mowing crew
Compost, ready for delivery. Let’s do this!
Urban Neighbors have a lovely spot to chat after watering and harvesting are complete
Helm Farms Victory Garden feeds a family of seven
The weather was chilly but our volunteers were cheerful
The Luxe chicken townhome at Helm Farms Victory Garden
A hen strives to escape the photographer
Urban Farm & Garden travelers get tips and tricks from tour guides
Tourists explore the edible landscape on NW 27th street, complete with strawberries, asparagus, serviceberries, okra, tomatoes, and greens.
Guilford Gardens even has bunnies for waste management
IMG_2170 (1)
Guilford Gardens feeds 120 families with their CSA
Touring CommonWealth Urban Farms