One of the best nectar plants is Blue Porterweed
Stachytarpheta jamaicensis / cayennensis… common names include include blue snakeweed, Cayenne snakeweed, dark-blue snakeweed, bluetop, nettle-leaf porterweed, rattail, rough-leaf false vervain, blue rat’s tail, Brazilian tea, Cayenne vervain, false verbena, joee, nettleleaf velvetberry, and Cayenne porterweed.
Blue porterweed S. Jamaicensis is considered native to the South (Florida Counties of Miami-Dade, Monroe, Collier and. Lee.)
Blue porterweed makes an excellent addition to the butterfly garden. It is a larval host plant for the tropical buckeye caterpillar as well as a nectar source for a wide variety of butterflies including the Gulf fritilary, Julia, monarch and large orange sulphur.
There are approximately 60 species of herbs and subshrubs in the genus Stachytarpheta which are widely distributed … The native porterweed is more like a ground cover with a lavender flower.
The plant blooms all year in South Florida, but usually less in July and from December through February.
Porterweed flower plants are nectar rich favorites with butterflies!
2 other reasons to plan to grow porterweed plants in your Florida USDA zone 9b landscape
1 – they do not need to be deadheaded (deadhead only if you want to avoid volunteer seedlings next season)
2 – they are ever-blooming
U.S.D.A. Zone: 9b-11
Light Requirements: Full sun; light shade
Drought Tolerance: Medium
Soil Requirements: Wide
Nutritional Requirements: Low
Major Pests: None
These plants start small but some can grow into huge and scraggly shrubs. You may want to trim the shrub occasionally to keep it shaped.
Take those cuttings and put them in a jug of water for a couple weeks for easy rooting and replanting in other places of your landscape.
It is frequently used in mass plantings, to create corridors, or as a single specimen to provide continuous color to the landscape.
I really like my Florida porterweed plant almost as much as the butterflies do. 🙂
Looking to attract butterflies? Porterweed … Plant it and they will come!
I’d like to hear which plants are the best butterfly nectar plants in your gardens.