Butterflies in Mind -- Zinnia
Susan C. Dunlap
A collection of 50 images as if seen from a butterfly’s point of view. Includes the names of native Zinnia species and the most complete list of US butterflies that will feed on Zinnia blossoms.
Butterflies in Mind -- Asclepias
Susan C. Dunlap
“Milkweed is the single most important plant for Monarch butterflies. This lavishly illustrated book contains details about the structure and cultivation of native Milkweeds, information about the 139 nectar-feeding butterflies they...
Butterflies in Mind -- Monarch
Susan C. Dunlap
This abundantly illustrated volume enables you to select from a complete list of well described perennial nectar plants that are known to attract & feed Monarch butterflies. Over 40 genera are described that are suitable to be grown...
Butterflies in Mind -- Perennials
Susan C. Dunlap
Butterflies in Mind - Perennials. This book is a definitive guide to perennial nectar plants preferred by US butterflies. It empowers you to feed, attract, support (and help identify) nectar-feeding butterflies that reside in the US....

Tagetes lemmonii

Family: Asteraceae


Native to: South East Arizona


Type: perennial

Form: clumping

Leaves evergreen

Max height: 6.6 feet

Max width: 5 feet






Attracts wildlife: adult butterfly, bird, specific butterfly species

Plant part consumed by birds: seeds

Plant features: evergreen

Exposure: sun

Landscape uses: container, cut flower, flower fragrant, foliage aromatic, hedge or edging

Propagates by: seed

flowers in spring

flowers in winter

flowers year round

Soil type: loam

USDA Zone: zone 9 to +20 f

Temp. range: +20 to +30 °F

Water: moderate, regular

There are 53 Tagetes in this member of the Compositae (Aster) family, commonly called MARIGOLD. Of these, Tagetes erecta, lemmonii, patula, and tenuifolia are cultivated. Only Tagetes lemmonii is a perennial; the others are annuals.

In Zone 9 Tagetes lemmonii will flower nearly year round and can grow to 6½' tall by 5' wide. Birds come to the plant for seed while butterflies come to the plant for flower nectar. It prefers regular to moderate watering. The yellow flowers come out in spring and winter - nearly year-round. It can be grown in sun, in container, in Zone 9 and is native to south east Arizona. The green leaf is opposite, linear, compound with a toothed margin and pointed leaf tip. Give it moderate or regular watering. both the flower and foliage are aromatic.

In addition to the long list of butterflies that are attracted to flowers in the Compositae family, Tagetes specifically attracts five butterflies:
Amblyscirtes nysa, Nysa Roadside-Skipper
Atalopedes campestris, Sachem
Nathalis iole, Dainty Sulphur
Staphylus hayhurstii, Hayhurst's Scallopwing
Vanessa virginiensis, American Lady

Container plants that attract adult butterflies - perennial

This plant can be grown in a container and will attract and feed adult butterflies. These plant can be found in every height range – from tiny to large – from less than a foot high to over 10 feet tall.

Our database of nectar plants for all US butterflies contains over 10,000 entries. The top five nectar plants -- Cirsium, Lantana, Asclepias, Salvia, and Verbena -- will appeal to 90% of all US butterflies. Pick from these if you want to provide nectar for your local butterflies.

Once you start with these, you can add from another 630 genera in 110 plant families to attract more insects to your garden.

By far the most import butterfly nectar plant family is Asteraceae. If you grow plants in from this family, butterflies will find your garden.