All entries to the Urquhart Butterfly Garden Photo Contest must be submitted no later than Midnight Tuesday September 5th. 
Just one week left to enter!
The Awards Ceremony is Saturday September 23

Bees & Bugs!

Are you befuddled by bees, and befogged by bugs? Ecologist, Jenna Braun will help you identify the many species that inhabit the Urquhart Butterfly Garden. Jenna will lead a free guided interpretive walk, Bees & Bugs on Saturday, September 2, … Continue reading

Education Program 2017

The Urquhart Butterfly Garden is pleased to present the 2017 Educational Program.  Bring your friends and bring your kids, because it is never to late or early to learn about the importance of pollinators, our environment, and the natural world.  Click here for more information.UBG Summer 2017 Poster_print


2up Rules_print-1

click to enlarge

By popular request we have extended the time of the the Photo Contest!

It begins on Monday, on June 5 and run through until just after Labour Day.
Rules may be picked up at the Garden, in a small yellow bucket, or can be seen on this web site. The number of entries in each category has increased from 2 to 3, a total of 12 photos if you enter the maximum number.

It’s hard to believe that springtime is almost over and summer is rapidly approaching. Maybe the best excuse for lack of postings, that we have been very busy – or rather Jessah has. Jessah Hodgins worked at the Garden last year and fortunately was able to return for 2017.

The pathways have all been freshened with new gravel, and hopefully the low spots have been removed. We were having some flooding problems.
The City kindly ‘gifted’ the gravel to us and the entire huge pile was spread by Jessah, using just a wheelbarrow and shovel. An extraordinary feat.

The spring ritual of the removal of the garlic mustard is behind us. What a pity that it does not appear to be a host plant for anything, just a perfect invasive nuisance.

We have planted some new perennials and added few annuals, so far it is slim pickings at our usual nurseries due to the unpredictable weather. The Korean Lilac is in full bloom, and usually attracts quite a few butterfly species, it would again this year if it would just stop raining for a few days.

What has been seen? Tiger Swallowtail, Black Swallowtail, Question Mark, Comma, Mourning Cloak, Red Admiral, American Lady, Pearl Crescent, Dusky Wing, Sulphur, Monarch, and of course Cabbage White. Not a great deal yet, but things are just getting underway. Joanna

Autumn at UBG 2016



Oregano October 1, 2016

October 2016

Summer has just slipped by, and it’s time for a general pruning and fall cleanup at the Urquhart Butterfly Garden. Digging out all the goldenrod always seems an endless task in itself. Then the Korean Lilac must be protected from the deer because they just love eating all the flower buds in the spring; we must mulch with straw between the shrubs, and many other things, – so much to do, so little time!


The chief gardener for this year is Jessah Hodgins, and many of you will have met her. Just when it looked as though summer was well and truly over Jessah pointed out a Red Admiral 2 days ago. A very nice surprise. We also have seen a pair of Mockingbirds in the garden for the past week, they are very quiet and shy; busy eating the Elderberries and other fruit.

The major task this summer was completing all the new panels on the kiosk. We were lucky to get a Trillium Grant which covered the costs, because it would have been quite beyond our means. Michelle Sharp took almost all the photographs and did the design – what would the Garden do without her?

The Awards Ceremony for the Photo Contest took place on September 24 at the Air Force Club. The award winners are posted on this web site here  or under UBG photo competition drop menu. The photos are terrific and if you have not seen them already you will enjoy looking at them. Next year the Photo Contest will run for a longer period, beginning in Mid June and ending in early September.


Monarch hiding in Gooseneck Loosestrife October 1 2016

The good news for the fall is that Jessah is going to be the chief gardener again next year, plus she will be taking on additional tasks, such as keeping the web site up-to-date, helping with the Educational Programme and running the Photo Contest. Michelle will take photos once every week or so through the winter, and we shall be posting them, to give us a boost through the long months ahead.

Look forward to seeing you all next year!



Urquhart Butterfly Garden Kiosk – Updated!

Thanks to a generous grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation the old panels on the UBG kiosk have been replaced with colourful new ones.  The beautiful eye-catching new panels have been designed by Michelle Sharp who also took almost all the photos.

Click here to see more!


The UBG's newly updated kiosk

The UBG’s newly updated kiosk

Welcome to the UBG 2016 Season

Great Spangled Fritillary July 9, 2016 Photo by Michelle Sharp

Great Spangled Fritillary
July 9, 2016
Photo by Michelle Sharp

Welcome to the Urquhart Butterfly Garden, in 2016!

This year we hope to once again be hosting a Summer Programme on Saturdays during August and September, as well as a Photo Contest from mid July until the end of August. We will also be publishing more brochures on specific subjects; continuing the revamp of the kiosk; starting new plantings and new signage. We will update you all on our progress as it happens.

At the moment we are just waiting for the rain to stop for a few days so we can begin our Spring cleanup. However, before we move into complete Spring mode, we thought you would like to see some photos taken during the winter and early 2016, these are posted on the site and all were taken by Michelle Sharp.

UBG 2015 Photo Contest

The Awards Ceremony for the 2015 Photo Contest was held on Saturday September 19th. There was a  slide show of all the photos which were entered into the contest, followed by a showing of the winning photos as the photographers names were announced.  We packed the Air Force Club and everyone had a good time and is looking forward to next year’s contest!
Award winning photos can be seen here
Thank you and congratulations to all the entrants and winners!

Herbs & Birds: Plant & Herb Lore & Bird Calling: Joanne Tunnicliffe Saturday September 12, 11am

Join Joanne Tunnicliffe, expert Gardener and Outdoor Educator in the Urquhart Butterfly Garden’s final event of the 2015 Summer Series.  This event is particularly suitable for kids, so bring them along!

Joanne has a wealth of knowledge about the herbs and wildflowers which grow abundantly throughout the garden. In the presentation, she will discuss the qualities of the plants and the relationship that occurs between the plants and other life forms.

Joanne’s presentations are both enlightening and informative, engaging people of all ages. She is especially known for her exceptionally realistic bird calls that garner responses from nearby birds.

The Guided Walk takes about an hour and begins at 11am on Saturday September 12. 

The workshop will proceed in rain or shine. In case of rain, the workshop will be held in the Hamilton Airforce Club, adjacent to the garden.

Guided Butterfly & Bird Identification Walk: Matt Mills Saturday September 5, 11am

Experienced naturalist Matt Mills returns to the Urquhart Butterfly Garden for a final Guided Butterfly & Bird Identification Walk of the UBG’s 2015 Summer Series.

Past walks have been enlightening and have yielded sightings of magnificent butterflies such as the stunning Great Spangled Fritillary, a butterfly not commonly seen in the garden.

Although the summer is coming to an end, there are still many beautiful and fascinating species residing in the garden. Don’t miss out on this final opportunity to experience the garden to the fullest with Matt’s leadership.

The Guided Walk takes about an hour and begins at 11am on Saturday September 5.  Please bring a chair.

If it rains the walk will be cancelled.

The Summer Series is funded by the Dougher Fund of the Hamilton Community Foundation.