The Crooked Garden   


What's New
Plant List

Photo Gallery

View Butterfly Metamorphosis
slide show

Butterflies of Lee County (brochure)


Crooked Garden Crew

2008 Butterfly-

Garden Path Fossil Shells

What is a Butterfly?




The Crooked Garden Then and Now

Contact the Curator

Our nature preserve - Then and Now


The Crooked Garden
Photo Gallery Page 3
These Photo Gallery pictures make their first appearance on the What's New page,
and are moved to the Photo Gallery page when NEW STUFF Happens in the Crooked Garden


8.18.07  and 8.16.07
Even the tiniest butterflies and moths visit our Crooked Garden.
This is the tiny little Fiery Skipper butterfly that makes it's home in the local grasses.
Here he is photographed taking nectar (see the proboscis feeding tube) from the diminutive Frog Fruit plant in the garden. Frog Fruit, also called Cape Weed (plant #59), is an invasive native weed that if left unchecked, takes over Florida yards, yet it is the host plant to the beautiful Phaon Crescent butterfly. We have the plant "contained" in a raised planter along the pathway in the Crooked Garden to demonstrate the simplicity and diversity of Florida plants for Butterfly Gardening.

This little fellow below is a moth that we believe is from the family, Ctenucha virginia. You can identify this tiny moth by observing it's comb like antenna. It is feeding (see his proboscis) on the Wild Button Sage, a Florida native plant (plant #22).

A valued guest to our garden has returned. The Majestic Monarch is enjoying the Milkweed nectar (see her proboscis).

In the photo's below, her proboscis is retracted as she is now focused on depositing her precious eggs
on the tender stems of the Milk Weed plant (plant #16).
The Crooked Garden is an Official Monarch Way Station for the migrating Monarch Butterfly.

We have additional butterflies making their home in the garden too!
(scroll down and click on the Butterfly Garden Photo Gallery)

Thanks to the generous contribution of Trieste residents Jeannie and John Frye, we now have two new Butterfly Houses in our Crooked Garden. These well built and beautifully painted houses add yet another layer of whimsical charm to our wonderful garden.


We have a new "paved" entrance thanks to the dirty, sweaty, and heavy "grunt work" of some of our
Crooked Garden volunteers. On June 19th Gordon Armstrong, Nate Jensen, Jim Price, and Carol Armstrong
worked in the 7:00PM to 8:30PM Florida Summer evening heat (only slightly more bearable than the daytime heat)
hauling dirt, sand, and bricks in order to give our garden entrance even more character!

(group photo by Judy Weil, another Crooked Garden volunteer)

The Crooked Garden Pergola has MORE ADDITIONS!
Decorative pavers have been placed beneath the two garden swings (they are a terrific hit, by the way!).
Now our guests will have a nice sturdy platform for hanging out in the swings.
visitors to the garden this week have also discovered two additional benches in the Pergola. These benches
have a dual purpose.

The back of the bench flips up and locks into a table position, and the tables can even be placed together
to form a temporary "traditional" picnic table too.
On Thursday, June 21, there were no less than 10 residents setting among the swings and benches in the Pergola, enjoying the Summer Solstice (the longest day of the year, and the first day of Summer), and waiting in eager anticipation for the newly installed Solar Malibu lights to turn on for the first time (Have you noticed that it doesn't take a lot to excite our fellow seniors?).
All of these special touches are designed to provide you and your guest with an enjoyable Crooked Garden experience. PLEASE REMEMBER THAT ALL OF THIS is made possible through the generous financial donations, and the donations of time and talent from the residents of Pelican Preserve!

BELIEVE IT OR NOT! The Butterflies are using the new "crosswalk" recently painted on the perimeter path at the entrance to the Crooked Garden. This Gulf Fritillary caterpillar was photographed as it was heading across the path and into the Preserve on it's final journey as a caterpillar. It must be looking for that "just right" place to attach itself to form the chrysalis in it's forth and final stage of metamorphosis.
Click here to learn more about the metamorphosis

"And crooked little caterpillars crawling through the grass."
We have learned that these little guys (and gals) can really travel on their final journey. The Gulf Fritillary caterpillar chrysalis have been spotted as far as 100 yards away from their "Host Plant" the Passion Vine (Passiflora spp.).
The Mocking Birds (along with other birds), are feeding a lot of these caterpillars to their new babies, so you might want to watch where you walk while in the garden (particularly in the late morning when the butterflies are very active), in order to reduce the casualties.

DID YOU KNOW That butterflies are very territorial?
Intimidation is the only "weapon" that they have
to get other butterflies to leave their area. That
is why you will see the Gulf Fritillary (in particular),
performing an air assault on a Monarch or Black Swallowtail
butterflies during your garden visit.


May 19, 2007
Did you know that there is more to see and discover
in the Garden than plants and butterflies?

Yes, these are close-up photo's of random rocks along our garden path.
Our garden is even more fun than ever!

(click on the thumbnail to view a larger image, and click your "back button" to return to this photo gallery)

There are Black Swallowtail butterflies "Growing" in our garden:



How clever he is to eat the dill weed and then hide
his chrysalis (cocoon) in the heavy foliage of another of his
host plants, the Parsley pant.

PLEASE don't disturb our plants or butterfly friends,
while they are preparing for their grand entrance!
Use this website as your UP CLOSE and Personal observation.




There are Gulf Fritillary Butterflies "Growing" in our garden:


There were over twenty Gulf Fritillary larva
on one Passion Vine the last week of April, and they
have "crawled off" to find a safe place to begin their
metamorphosis. These new larva are from more recently
laid eggs
This one lone chrysalis (cocoon) attached to the metal trellis, and
is the only one that could be located for the May 3, 2007 photograph.

Does the bottom end of this chrysalis
look like a little howling dog face to you?



Sunday, May 6, 2007 at 10:00 AM
Black Swallowtail & Gulf Fritillary in the garden

Black Swallow Tail on Thistle

Black Swallow Tail on Thistle

Black Swallow Tail on Thistle

Black Swallow Tail on Thistle

Gulf Fritillary feeding

Look closely and see it's proboscis in the flower

A hungry little Fritillary getting nectar from the flower

Black Swallow Tail feeding on Golden Dewdrop

Gulf Fritillary at the new Passion vine trellis




The Butterfly Bush is a favorite Butterfly "nectar" plant.
(see Plant list for Botanical names)

Even Love Bugs LOVE the blooms of the Jamaica Caper bush.

A crazy looking plant in the Milkweed family called
Giant Milkweed. it is another Host plant to
the Monarch and Queen Butterflies.

Don't forget to visit the What's NEW page on this website

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