Large Milkweed Bug ( Oncopeltus fasciatus ) on Swamp Milkweed ( Asclepias incarnata )

Large Milkweed Bug (Oncopeltus fasciatus) on Swamp Milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)

Wildflower meadows are a rich and colourful habitat full of flowers and grasses...the variety of flowers in turn attracts lots of insects and, of course, the creatures that feed on them.
— British Broadcasting Company (BBC)

We have two unruly flowerbeds on our property which could be called meadow-inspired gardens. One is filled with asters, sneezeweed, boneset, and milkweed...the other, planted only this spring, is primarily coneflowers, butterfly weed, milkweed (common and swamp) and Joe Pye.

Our first meadow garden - planted along the west-side of the house attracted Monarch butterflies last year. Unfortunately, because of its awkward location on our property we had little opportunity to observe them nectaring, depositing eggs or their metamorphoses. This spring - while selecting plants - we took measures to remedy the situation. We chose a number of native 'meadow' plants to line a fifteen foot (in length) bed in the backyard to in effect, mimic a wildflower meadow.  

Although petite and lacking the necessary grasses to make it a true meadow...we think of it as our meadow garden; its unruly habit and variety of fauna has endeared it to us! ♥ 

Jessica Allen explores the fields and forests of Pennsylvania with her artist-husband, Michael Allen, and their son, Benjamin. She shares her observations through words and pictures of everyday magic and beauty she sees in her world.