The Fred Funk Butterfly Garden in Lady Lake is different from most you’ve seen. It’s not inside an enclosed hot house; instead, it’s a plant demonstration garden with plants that grow well in Florida’s climate and plants that attract Central Florida butterflies.
This large garden is actually nine gardens tailored for various families of butterflies. There are new trellises, stones, and flowers were added to the plants spread over the lawns beside and behind the Lady Lake Seventh Day Adventist Church, which works in a partnership with The Villages Butterfly Gardens Club.
The butterfly garden was planted to go a step further than most public gardens. It’s intended to be a gift for anyone who enjoys serenity and a special place to see butterflies native to Florida at any time. In fact, visitors will see more than 200 species of plants they might want to use in their home garden to attractive the beautiful flyers.
Though many people know milkweek is the Monarch butterfly’s host plant, many don’t realize the various milkweed species that grow here. Milkweed is also planted to attract the cousins of the beautiful Monarch butterfly, the Queen and Prince butterflies and along the fence are Zebra Longwings and Gulf Fritillaries flocking around passionflower vines.
The best news about this garden is what you can learn. You’ll find the plants most popular with butterflies and how you can plant them, whether you have a large or small area to work with. There are signs with each to denote they are nectar plants and what butterfly prefers them. Signs also share the names of members who donated plants.
The Fred Funk Butterfly Garden is a delightful place to spend a warm, sunny morning or afternoon enjoying butterflies (and probably a few hummingbirds). Free and open to the public 24/7, the garden is located on the grounds of the Lady Lake Seventh Day Adventist Church, 231 Lake Griffin Road.
For further information about the garden or special open houses (June 21 is the first one) where volunteers are on hand to talk to visitors, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, visit sites.google.com/view/tvbgclub, or call Alycyn Culbertson (303-847-8771). Free guided group tours are given by request at email@example.com. Donations are gladly accepted and appreciated.