The Cosmos Flower is not native to the East Coast of the United States. Instead, it is native to Central America and has since been naturalized to many eastern parts of North America through human travel and selection as a popular home garden flower. Common in Mexico, the Cosmos Flower is a natural source of food for the Monarch Butterfly, a migratory species of butterfly that has a range spanning from Brazil to Canada.
A source of nectar for many other butterflies on the east coast, the emerging ecological value of the Cosmos Flower challenges conceptions of what is native within the scales of time and space that define this word.
“The word cosmos is derived from the Greek word for harmony, referring to its evenly placed petals” (NC extension).
Butterflies not only bring vibrant colors to our gardens and are used as a key indicator of environmental quality, but they also help in the pollination process, thus improving biodiversity. These shelters have been designed to offer butterflies a warm, dry and safe place that protects them from predators at different times of the year.