Roaring Brook's Gardens

Visit our Sundial
in the
butterfly garden


Mer's Native Plant
Butterfly Garden

Located directly in front of the Nature Center building, this garden was begun as a memorial to Marabeth Storrs Finn in the spring of 2001. It contains plants native to Connecticut that will attract not only butterflies but also the larvae (caterpillars) from which they develop. While butterflies feed from many different flowering plants, most butterfly larvae, such as the familiar Monarch, feed exclusively on one kind of host plant. By planting a wide variety of flowering plants, including several grasses, shrubs, and trees, we hope to attract a broad range of butterfly species.

Funded through a grant from the Silvio Conte Fish & Wildlife Foundation, the garden was developed to demonstrate the beauty of our native plants in a garden setting. These native plants are well adapted to Connecticut's climate and thrive with little additional watering and minimal care.

Finding a place for these plants in your home landscape will not only add beauty and movement to your garden but will help ensure the survival of these butterflies.

The garden is at its peak late June to September. After hard frosts, the garden becomes a haven for small birds that relish the seeds of many of our native plants.

If you are interested in volunteering to help maintain the garden, please contact Margery Winters at Roaring Brook Nature Center - 860-693-0263.

For a checklist of the plants in this garden, click here.

For a checklist of the butterflies seen at Roaring Brook and the vicinity, click here.

For additional information on Connecticut's butterflies and native plants, please visit the following sites:

For information on what not to plant in your garden, please click here.









Porritt Wildflower Trail

This garden was created in memory of Lonnie and Phyllis Porritt, long-time supporters of the Nature Center and lovers of wildlife. Native wildflowers grow here naturally; others have been planted along both sides of this trail. Begun as a small trail, it has been expanded and enhanced through the generous efforts of the Cherry Brook Garden Club of Canton.

Most wildflowers bloom in the spring before the leaves on the trees provide too much shade. These flowers are often referred to as "ephemerals" due to their short blooming season.

A guide to our wildflowers is available in the Nature Center's store.