Beautiful Butterflies

by SAMANTHA EDWARDS

With the early vernal equinox this year (March 19), signs of spring are beginning to emerge in San Diego. You might notice the days getting slightly longer, flowers blooming from the earth, and animals and insects becoming more active – including butterflies!

We’ve rounded up a few fun ways to learn more about these colorful creatures and welcome the official arrival of the season.


Butterfly Jungle

March 21 – May 10
Open daily, 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

This popular exhibit at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park is a magical experience for children and adults alike. Get up close and personal as thousands of dazzling butterflies flit, float, and flutter around you inside the tropical jungle habitat. Visitors wearing bright colors may even find a butterfly perching on them!
www.sdzsafaripark.org


Gardening for Butterflies

April 4
11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Butterfly Farms is a nonprofit in Encinitas that focuses on native butterfly education, conservation, and research. Their free-flight butterfly vivarium is open to the public every day from April through November, and they also host a variety of events throughout the year. Learn from butterfly gardening experts about how to create a garden habitat for butterflies and other pollinators in their Butterfly Gardening 101 workshop on April 4.
www.butterflyfarms.org


Annual Butterfly Release

May 23
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

With plenty of nectar-rich plants and hiding spots within the rocks, Balboa Park’s Zoro Garden (also called Butterfly Garden) is the perfect place for caterpillars to safely complete their life cycle into butterflies. Each year, Friends of Balboa Park has been celebrating the beginning of spring with the Butterfly Release, bringing in 400 live painted lady butterflies to encourage pollination throughout the park. Mark your calendars for this fun and free event!
www.friendsofbalboapark.org