Build a Butterfly Box

Photo: Jerry-Oldenettel

Build a Butterfly Box

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Encourage butterflies in your garden by including lots of nectar-giving flowering plants, muddy puddles for them to drink from, and somewhere to shelter.

This lovely Butterfly Box makes a graceful addition to any garden. Using a few tools and some untreated wood, it’s easy to build with the help of an adult.

You will need

  • Untreated wood
  • Sand paper
  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • Drill
  • Screws
  • A pole or wire
  • Twigs
  • Paintbrush
  • Non-toxic paint


  1. Sand your wood
  2. Attach front and back to the top and base with screws or nails
  3. Attach sides with screws (so they can be removed)
  4. Mount on pole or attach wire to back and hang from fence – position it in a sunny spot near flowering plants or shrubs
  5. If desired, paint with non-toxic paint
  6. Place twigs and bark inside for butterflies to rest on
  7. Enjoy!

Tips to Attract Butterflies

  • Plant local natives including grasses, nectar-giving flowering plants, and citrus. This will give butterflies somewhere to feed and lay their eggs.
  • Plant a variety of heights of plants so butterflies are protected from strong winds.
  • If you want to see butterflies, you’ll need to see caterpillars, too. So avoid using chemicals or pesticides in your backyard.
  • Include rocks in your garden so butterflies have somewhere to sit and sun themselves.
  • Place a shallow dish of muddy water in a sunny spot so butterflies can have a drink.
Butterfly box

Be a backyard buddy

It’s easy. All you have to do is care… and take a few simple steps. Backyard Buddies are the native plants and animals that share our urban areas, waterways, backyards and parks.  Backyard Buddies are also the people who value native wildlife and want to protect it.

Find out more about your buddies

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