I turned my garden into a habitat for bees and butterflies. Albeit on a small scale, it is a wildlife garden. I work mostly with native plants with a few exceptions such as Butterfly bush and Lavender.
Butterflies regularly visit the garden but I wanted to encourage them to breed. I knew that the Brimstone butterfly, Gonepteryx rhamni, is present in this part of our country so I decided to grow the only foodplants this species of butterfly uses: alder buckthorns and purging buckthorns.
Below: alder buckthorn ~Rhamnus frangula / Frangula alnus
It was a sunny day in April a few days ago when all of a sudden I saw a female near the alder buckhorn bushes and I could see her laying eggs! Interesting to see that she preferred alder buckthorns and not purging buckthorn which is the other foodplant the Brimstone butterfly uses for her caterpillars.
Below: purging buckthorn ~ Rhamnus cathartica
By the way, both species of buckthorns are good plants for many pollinators. The flowers are rather small but rich in nectar.
Below: Female Brimstone laying eggs on young shoots of alder buckthorns
Photo above: the tiny little thing on the right hand side is an egg, difficult to photograph though.
This really proves that if you create the right conditions, butterflies will breed in the garden.