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Every tree matters and so is every butterfly host plant. We can go on with our lives without giving back to nature but it is courteous, kind and it feels good to give back in a very small gesture. Being a part of ‘One Square Meter Butterfly Garden’ is a very good starting point. This might appear to be very small but let it surprise you the way it surprised me. One summer, I tried planting wildflowers on a flower box on my window instead of the usual decorative plants like Geranium. They are pretty but they are of no use to butterflies. Could you imagine my surprise when I saw butterflies fluttering around by the window? A surprise visit of butterflies is one of the joys in life which would really make you smile. It boosted my confidence and I thought that I should try planting butterfly host plants in the garden. I started in a very small corner and after few weeks, I found myself taking photographs of butterflies. I then thought that if there would be a collaborative effort in many corners of the world planting just a square meter of butterfly garden then we would be able to do something for nature.

One square meter might sound small  but if there would be hundreds, thousands or more who would join this project then we would be creating something beautiful for this planet. We would try to break the chain of taking but form a chain of taking and giving. We would be united by our pursuit.

Let us create a small garden of wonders and possibilities. ‘Wonder’ in a sense that we are creating life. A butterfly leads a very dangerous life. Do you know that aside from the metamorphosis a butterfly has to go through. Unknown to many, only 0.5 to 1 % of every generation of butterflies survive the whole process; from an egg to adult butterfly. . ‘Possibilities’, yes, we are creating possibilities that butterflies would find us. Every square meter of butterfly host plants would offer a possibility that we could prevent or at least slow down habitat loss. Butterflies, due to their rapid and sensitive responses to habitat and climate changes, are very important environmental indicators.

Showing a little love and caring would go a long way and nothing would be lost. First and foremost, you give back to the environment who gives you a lot. Second, you learn how to be more human: caring and attending to something which needs your attention and care. Third, perhaps it could take time before we see a butterfly and butterflies visiting us, do not forget the plants performing their duty in silence; consuming carbon dioxide, releasing oxygen and reducing gaseous pollution. See, it is a give and take relationship which we are building square meter per square meter

I seriously encourage that this project be carried out outside schools but encouraged by schools in families. It would be a family project encouraged by schools to take place in homes without the promise of grades or additional credits. This must be considered as initiative to do something for the environment without the benefit of school rewards but a good feeling of doing something on one’s own for butterflies. I do believe that is where students learn caring and taking responsibility for this planet. This project also welcomes civic societies or organizations, homeowners associations and other interested parties to be a part.

Let us all create a beautiful and colorful wonders and possibilities square meter per square meter.

Thank you very much.

Edith Flores Wolff                                       

Project Coordinator