2010 Season Begins
The Panhandle Butterfly House will open for its 14th season on April 29th.
This year’s opening ceremony includes the dedication of the Blair Blage
Memorial Gazebo. Blair, a devoted and much loved volunteer, passed away Volume 3 Issue 1
in 2009. He and his family requested donations be made to the Panhandle Spring 2010
To honor Blair and his commitment to education, the funds have been used The Panhandle Butterfly House
to expand our ability to teach others. is a project of:
“The gazebo will be used as an outdoor classroom” said Theresa Friday,
Santa Rosa County Extension Agent and Chair of the Panhandle Butterfly
House Advisory Committee. “It’s not unusual for us to have large groups of
children attend our Kiderpillar School, an award-winning youth education
program. Due to limited space, we teach some lessons outside. Without
shelter, the children and teachers get very hot.”
The 12’ x 20’ gazebo is located just to the west of the vivarium. A vinyl
gazebo with a concrete foundation, this wheelchair accessible structure
provides a beautiful view of our butterfly gardens.
In addition to the ribbon cutting several other special events will occur. Now
that the cold weather is behind us, gardeners are looking to spruce up their
damaged gardens. If your garden took a hit from this winter’s cold, stop by
and stock up on butterfly-friendly plants. The plant sale will be held April
29 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. and April 30 and May 1 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Plants being sold include heliotropes, geraniums, flambe’ yellows,
copperleaf, and Liberty Lace sweet potato vines.
The public is invited to participate in the release of butterflies in our
vivarium. Releases will be on April 29, 30 and May 1 at 11 am. Attendees
will be accommodated on a “first come, first serve” basis.
Butterfly related merchandise and resource materials will also be available 8581 Navarre Parkway
for sale. The PBH will be open all three days from 10 am to 3 pm. Navarre, FL
Panhandle Butterfly House Page 1
Volunteers Needed What You Can Do To Help
The cost of everything continues to rise, including
Volunteers are the life-blood of this exhibit. the cost of butterflies. To keep our large exhibit
Volunteers are active in all aspects of the stocked with beautiful butterflies, we purchase
Panhandle Butterfly House. many each week. The very cold winter took its toll
on the butterfly farmers and prices have
Join our team of docents at the Panhandle skyrocketed. More than ever, your help is needed
Butterfly House. Docents are trained volunteers to raise money for the Panhandle Butterfly House.
who act as ambassadors for our natural
world. They contribute by educating and helping There are several programs that individuals,
visitors gain a better understanding of butterflies groups, businesses and organizations can
and the natural habitat in which butterflies thrive. participate in and help us.
As a docent, you will greet the public, provide Butterfly Buddy: Do you work with a great
casual interpretations, and answer questions. You group of people. Reward them by purchasing a
will have an opportunity to make a valuable and week’s worth of butterflies. A special release party
enriching contribution to the community. will be scheduled for your invited guests.
To prepare you to be successful, we ask you to
attend a training course. After completing
the course, you will be prepared with the tools
and knowledge to be successful. Class size is
limited to ensure that we can provide individual
attention and training.
May 8 - 10:15 am - 3:00 pm
June - To be announced
Kaleidoscope Society: A flying group of
butterflies is called a kaleidoscope. Become a
member of our kaleidoscope by donating. Just
complete the form on page five and mail it to the
Wish List: It takes a lot to keep our gardens
looking nice and the butterflies well fed. See if
you have anything on our wish list that you would
like to donate. Go to
www.panhandlebutterflyhouse.org to see our wish
Gift Shop: Looking for a butterfly related gift for
someone special. Fly into our gift shop and take a
look. Open Thursday-Saturday, 10 am to 3 pm.
Volunteer Fran Grissom helps a child release a butterfly
Donate Online: To make your donating easier,
you can donate online through PayPal. Just visit
All classes will be held at the Navarre Chamber of
Commerce and the Panhandle Butterfly House
located at 8543 Navarre Parkway, Navarre,
Commemorative Bricks: Honor someone by
purchasing an engraved brick to be permanently
placed in our conservation walk.
To register for a class or to request more
information about becoming a docent, please
Panhandle Butterfly House Page 2
Lepidoptera Lookout How Does Your Garden
Named for its conspicuous target-shaped
eyespots, the common buckeye, Junonia coenia, is Can weeds really be beneficial? Butterflies would
one of the most distinctive and readily-identifiable answer with a resounding YES!
North American butterflies. It inhabits a wide
variety of open, sunny landscapes including old Turkey tangle fogfruit, also known as matchweed,
fields, roadsides, utility corridors, gardens, parks, is an important host and nectar plant.
yards, fallow agricultural land, scrubs, pine
savannas, and weedlots. Turkey tangle fogfruit can be used as a ground
cover and is evergreen in warm years. It is also
The common buckeye is a resident across the evergreen in areas protected from frost. It
southern United States and much of Mexico. In spreads vigorously to the point of being a weed if
Florida, it can be found in all 67 counties. The allowed to grow in the lawn.
butterfly regularly expands its range northward
each year to temporarily colonize much of the Fogfruit generally is a good nectar plant for
U.S., occasionally reaching southern Canada. butterflies. It is an attractive plant rambling over
boulders or the edges of hanging baskets. It also
can tolerate drought and flooding.
This species is a member of the verbena family
(family Verbenaceae), which includes about 75
genera and 3,000 species of herbs, shrubs, and
trees, mostly of tropical and warm temperate
It is a larval host plant for the common buckeye,
phaon crescent and white peacock butterflies.
It is a nectar plant for barred yellow, ceraunus
blue, field skipper, gray hairstreak, little
metalmark, Miami blue, Palatka skipper, phaon
crescent, queen, swarthy skipper, tropical
checkered-skipper and other butterflies.
Starting in late summer and continuing through
fall, huge numbers of adults migrate southward
into peninsular Florida. Adults overwinter.
The common buckeye is a medium-sized butterfly
with several large, conspicuous round eyespots.
Females are generally larger than males and have
more rounded forewings. The forewing has two
prominent orange bars. The upper surface of the
hindwing has two large eyespots and a broad
The mature larva is black with numerous blue-
black branched spines.
The larvae utilize a variety of herbaceous plants
including: turkey tangle fogfruit, Phyla nodiflora
L.; toadflax, Linaria spp.; plantain, Plantago spp.;
twinflower, Dyschoriste spp.; false foxglove, mat lippia - Phyla nodiflora (L.)
Agalinis spp.; and American bluehearts, Buchnera
Richard Old, XID Services, Inc., Bugwood.org
Credit: Featured Creatures,
Panhandle Butterfly House Page 3
Volunteer Spotlight Donor Spotlight
On December 5, 2009, Len Schellhorn lost his Due to the generosity of our very special
battle with cancer. Len was a beloved volunteer donors, we are still able to offer free
who gave generously to the Panhandle Butterfly admission to the Panhandle Butterfly House.
Thanks to the following donors who
Len was a Santa Rosa County Master Gardener contributed during the first quarter of 2010.
and joined the Panhandle Butterfly House
volunteer group in 2000. Goldmine Bingo
He had many skills. During the construction of Driftwood Garden Club, Gulf Breeze
the new vivarium in 2003, Len was the first to
volunteer and took on the role of building Lois Peterzen
supervisor. He worked diligently demolishing the
old house and building the new one. Peggy Gray
When the building of the new house started in University of Florida Student Club
January of 2003, Len worked through the cold, Milton Campus
wind and rain. When told he should wait until
better weather, his comment was, “This is
important and we will open in early May.” The
Panhandle Butterfly House opened on schedule as
Len had promised. The volunteers that helped
with the building will always remember him for
his dedication to the Butterfly House and for his
Len was an avid gardener. He grew hot peppers The third life stage of a butterfly is the
and tomatoes and made his own salsa. He also pupa. Butterflies form chrysalis. The word
made his own smoked paprika. These are just a chrysalis means an “object of gold”.
couple of things he produced from his garden. He
generously shared his garden produce and his How does a caterpillar know when to form a
knowledge. Len was a sought-after speaker for pupa? Certain chemicals called hormones
local garden clubs. are released in the caterpillar's body when
it reaches a certain size. This causes the
After completion of the Butterfly House, he caterpillar to stop eating and start looking
started another project. He became known as for a site to pupate. Most caterpillars will
“The Flag Man”. He wanted to have an American look for a hiding spot where predators can't
Flag in every classroom in Gulf Breeze and he find them.
accomplished this also.
Len is survived by his lovely Suellen and three
The buckeye chrysalis
Panhandle Butterfly House Page 4
We are a non-profit 501c3 organization that relies on and receives 100% of your donation.
100% of each donation is tax deductible.
City: ___________________________________________ State: __________________
Zip: ________________________ Phone: _____________________________________
This donation can be “in memory” or “in honor” of someone special.
When doing this, please advise to whom we should send the acknowledgement card and newsletter.
City: __________________________________________ State: __________________
Zip: ________________________ Phone: ____________________________________
Special Notes: __________________________________________________________
To join the Kaleidoscope Society, check the desired level of membership entitling you to receive
newsletters and special mailings.
□ Skipper $10 □ Swallowtail $50 □ Painted Lady $250 □ Zebra Longwing $1000
□ Buckeye $25 □ Gulf Fritillary $100 □ Viceroy $500 □ Monarch $1500
Please make checks payable to:
Panhandle Butterfly House
PO Box 5208
Navarre, FL. 32566
Butterflies through a
The caterpillar of the common buckeye is a
Kiderpillar School will begin its 4th year of
tours in May.
The spiny, black-and-white caterpillar has a
Many of our experienced tour guides have
bright orange head. Its behavior suggests its
moved, causing a shortage of teachers of
diet makes it virtually immune to vertebrate
this award-winning program. We hope to
predation, but the pupa and adult are quite
rebuild the numbers during spring training.
It is so rewarding to work with the youth
Along the Gulf Coast, the common cudweed is
and see the wonder in their eyes as they
an excellent caterpillar food.
enter the world of butterflies in the
If you enjoy working with children, please
take the docent class. A short class on
teaching the tours will later be available,
complete with lessons plans to ensure a
As in past years, tours will be offered
Monday through Wednesday and
prescheduled by contacting our website:
Photo credit: Sturgis McKeever,
Georgia Southern University, calling the Santa Rosa County Extension
Bugwood.org office at 850-623-3868.
Panhandle Butterfly House Page 5
Panhandle Butterfly House
8581 Navarre Parkway
Open to the Public
Thursday, Friday and Saturday
10 am to 3 pm
Scheduled Tours Available
Send an email to
to request your tour.
Groups of 15 or more only please.
Panhandle Butterfly House Page 6