Garden Photo of the Day

Libby’s Backyard Wildlife Habitat

A bee, butterfly, and bird paradise in South Carolina

yellow bird on a bright pink zinnia flower

I’m Libby Breitenbaugh, and I garden in Zone 8a in Irmo, South Carolina. I’m sharing a few photos from summer 2022. I have been gardening for over 30 years. I previously shared photos of the butterfly garden I started in 2016 (Libby’s Butterfly Garden in South Carolina). When I began gardening for wildlife, my butterfly garden slowly transformed into a bird-, bee-, and butterfly-friendly garden. I also incorporate herbs and vegetables in my garden. I stopped using chemical pesticides and opted for natural alternatives. Since doing so my bee population has doubled. I also compost my kitchen scraps and yard trimmings. My garden consists of natives, perennials, and annual plants. I have both nectar and host plants, and I always include milkweed for the monarchs. You can have a beautiful garden that supports backyard wildlife. My garden supplies shelter, food, and water for my all my visitors. I also enjoy taking photos of my garden and all its visitors.

close up of white clematis flowerClematis ‘Henryi’, Zones 4–8

close up of bumblebee on blue Salvia flowersBumblebee on Salvia farinacea (Zones 7–10 or as annual)

stepping stones in mulched path through gardens with lots of flowersThis garden path is lined with lambs’ ears (Stachys byzantina, Zones 4–8), with the rest of the bed filled with colorful flowers including coneflowers (Echinacea hybrids, Zones 4–8) and Salvia ‘Vista’ (Zones 9–11 or as an annual).

close up of container planting with colorful foliage and pink flowersThis garden urn is overflowing with petunias (Petunia hybrids, annual), with an upright spire of Cordyline australis (Zones 9–11) and a trailing curtain of golden creeping Jenny (Lysimachia nummularia ‘Aurea’, Zones 3–9).

yellow bird on a bright pink zinnia flowerA bright male American goldfinch hangs out on a zinnia (Zinnia elegans, annual) flower.

monarch butterfly on a bright purple flowerA monarch butterfly fuels up on at a butterfly bush (Buddleia davidii, Zones 5–9).

gravel and stepping stone path through mulched garden bedsBeautiful pathway through the gardens

pipevine swallowtail butterfly on a pink zinnia flowerA pipevine swallowtail butterfly on a zinnia

hummingbird sipping on pink flowersA female ruby-throated hummingbird gathers nectar from a pentas (Pentas lanceolata, Zones 10–11 or as an annual).

close up of a white and light purple phloxThese phlox look like they might be the ‘Fashionably Early’ (Phlox hybrid, Zones 4–8) hybrid phlox, which bloom earlier and stay shorter than the traditional garden phlox (Phlox paniculata, Zones 4–8).


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View Comments


  1. avajames 03/02/2023

    Nice post i am glad too see it. Want another article. save with blog

    1. libbysgarden 03/03/2023

      Thank you!

  2. paiya 03/02/2023

    Beautiful garden in every aspect… and excellent photos

    1. libbysgarden 03/03/2023

      Thank you!

  3. wittyone 03/02/2023

    That urn with the petunias, Cordyline, and creeping Jenny is just gorgeous. I'm going to try that combination but the shape and color of the urn really showcases those flowers, sadly I don't have any urns to use. Maybe a trip to an antique store might remedy that?

    1. libbysgarden 03/03/2023

      Thank you so much! I used the thriller-filler-spiller method for arranging the urn. I purchased the urn last spring at our Home Depot. I would try looking on their website searching under urns. I was surprised by how many urns they carry online.

  4. User avater
    simplesue 03/02/2023

    You've really planted a pretty garden that nature just loves!
    Great photos of the creatures on the flowers, and I love the garden arch and bird feeders- they always bring interest to a garden- such a nice space you created!

    1. libbysgarden 03/03/2023

      What a wonderful, encouraging comment. Thank you so much!

  5. User avater
    user-7007816 03/02/2023

    What a beautiful garden and natural habitat you have created. Thanks for sharing.
    By the way, my mother was a Breitenbaugh. Related?

    1. libbysgarden 03/03/2023

      Thank you! Your mother would almost have to be related to my husband. Very few people with that name and spelling. May I ask what her first name is?

  6. User avater
    bdowen 03/02/2023

    Beautiful photography, especially the creature visitors.

    1. libbysgarden 03/03/2023

      Thank you!

  7. btucker9675 03/02/2023

    All so very pretty!

    1. libbysgarden 03/04/2023

      Thank you!

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