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20 Apr 2020

How to make a butterfly feeder

Balmacara butterfly
Want to bring beautiful butterflies into your garden? Michael Lawrie, Head Gardener for the Trust’s Dumfries & Galloway properties and Head of Threave School of Heritage Gardening, shares tips on how to make a butterfly feeder.
A photograph of a butterfly feeder made from a paper plate and suspended by thick string from a bush, near a stone wall. The strings are decorated with multi-coloured beads. Slices of kiwi, lemon and strawberries lie on the plate.

What you’ll need

  • a paper plate
  • string or cord
  • beads and flowers to decorate
  • pieces of soft fruit for the butterflies to eat – the riper the better!

Step 1

Use a paper punch to make holes in a paper plate.


Step 2

Pull the pieces of string or cord through the holes, securing them with a knot at the end by the plate. Add brightly coloured beads to the cords, and any other decorations you like. Tie the loose ends all together at the top (like a hanging basket).


Step 3

Add the slices of soft fruit – such as kiwi, pear, apple or berries – and hang the butterfly feeder up in the garden near flowering plants.


Top tip

Butterflies are attracted to bright colours – they particularly like white, pink, purple, red, yellow and orange.

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