PHOTO #1: Keep Victoria Beautiful partnered with the Texas Master Naturalist - Mid-Coast Chapter to restore the butterfly garden at The Texas Zoo.
PHOTO #2: From left, Master Naturalists Debbi Roskey and Marilyn Stewart clear overgrowth in the butterfly garden at The Texas Zoo.
PHOTO #3: From left, Master Naturalists Cathy Koenig, Steven Koenig and Janet McCrea prepare the flowerbeds at the butterfly garden at The Texas Zoo.
The butterfly garden at The Texas Zoo is going through its own metamorphosis with help from Keep Victoria Beautiful and the Texas Master Naturalist - Mid-Coast Chapter.
Keep Victoria Beautiful partnered with the Master Naturalists to restore the butterfly garden. The project was funded by a Green Bag Grant from Keep Texas Beautiful. The grant program is sponsored by H-E-B and Central Market.
“We are thankful for H-E-B’s ongoing support of our beautification programs and for the Master Naturalists and The Texas Zoo for helping to make this project possible,” said Community Appearance Manager Christy Youker.
Although the butterfly garden had become overgrown with weeds and vines, it still harbored many of the flowers that were originally planted there to attract butterflies and hummingbirds, including native plants such as fragrant mistflower and Turk’s cap along with shrimp plants, Mexican honeysuckle and a variety of purple salvia.
Keep Victoria Beautiful and the Master Naturalists cleared away the overgrowth while leaving the beneficial plants. They also added more varieties, such as native salvias, blue mistflowers, Texas lantana and caterpillar food plants like milkweeds for monarchs, along with passionflower, pipevines, sunflowers and frogfruit.
Because the garden is on a slope, they added terracing to prevent erosion.
The restored garden also includes a puddler (which resembles a birdbath) that butterflies can visit to collect nutrients.
Youker plans to add informational signage to the garden as well as a box where visitors can pick up informative flyers about the plants in the garden.
“That way, if residents want to have their own butterfly gardens at home, they can take home a list of plants they can use,” Youker said.
To learn more about Keep Victoria Beautiful programs and initiatives, visit www.victoriatx.gov/kvb.