Spring Butterfly Exhibit opens at Desert Botanical Garden

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland
By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX -- The Desert Botanical Garden is celebrating the changing of the seasons with its Spring Butterfly Exhibit.

The Maxine and Jonathan Marshall Butterfly Pavilion, which is 12 years old, is full of fluttering North American butterflies.

The Garden brings in up to 12 varieties of North American butterflies, which thrive on sunny and warm weather. The butterflies come from Oklahoma and Florida.

There are about 1,000 butterflies in the pavilion. Because butterflies have such short life spans -- two to four weeks -- the Garden adds new ones every week.

Expect to see Giant Swallowtails, Great Southern Whites, Zebra Swallowtails, Queens, Julias, Painted Ladies and Malachites among others.

About half of the varieties that call the Garden's pavilion home are native to Arizona.

Friendly Garden volunteers, or "flight crews," will be on hand to answer questions and share information about the butterflies and plants. There are special display areas featuring butterfly host plants and a Discovery Station where you have the chance to see our scaly-winged friends up close.

If you'd like to encourage a butterfly or two to use you as a perch, Garden staffers suggest you wear light colors like green, yellow and white.

"Butterflies love to land on hats," garden spokeswoman and butterfly expert Sophia Rogers said.

The exhibit is the perfect opportunity to see butterflies in the wild.

While we're enjoying spring-like temperatures, the actual start of spring -- the vernal equinox -- is still more than two weeks away. This year, the vernal equinox is on March 20 at 9:57 a.m. Arizona time.

The Spring Butterfly Exhibit, like the Monarch Butterfly Exhibit in the fall, is seasonal. It's open 9:30 a.m.-5- p.m. daily through Mother's Day, which is Sunday, May 11.

Members and children under 3 admitted free
General Public: $3.50 with paid Garden admission
Garden admission: $22 adults, $20 seniors, $12 students, $10 children

Desert Botanical Garden
1201 N. Galvin Parkway
Phoenix, AZ 85008