Study after study has shown that communing with nature improves folks’ mental and physical health—and even increases their productivity at work. But you don’t have to trek off on a photographic safari to enjoy these benefits.
Something as simple as watching butterflies flit around your backyard works just as well. They’ll show up in droves if you plant a wide assortment of nectar-rich flowers, but you’ll entice them even more quickly (and get a close-up view, besides) if you install a nectar feeder or two near your house.
You can buy special butterfly feeders, but my advice is, don’t waste your money! The reason: Nearly all of these devices come equipped with a moat that you fill with water, which is supposed to keep crawling insects out of the sweet syrup. But a lot of small butterflies also get trapped in the water, often with fatal results.
Fortunately, there’s a simple—and safer—way to serve refreshments. Just get a thin, green, plastic-fiber scrubbing pad in the Laundry & Cleaning Products aisle, and saturate it with sugar water (1 part water to 4 parts white sugar is good). Set the pad on a plastic plate that you’ve screwed to a post or other flat surface.
Then sit back and wait for the show to begin!