California Gardens - The Year Round Gardening Site

Variable Checkerspot Butterfly - Euphydryas chalcidona

The Variable Checkerspot Butterfly is in our gardens in April and May. This one is sipping the nectar of Scabiosa farinosa, one of the pincushion flowers. The caterpillars eat Plantain, Penstemon and Snowberry. Since nearly everyone has Plantain even if you don't want it. You likely have the host plants for this beauty. Plantain has been called "Englishman's Foot" due to its great ability to thrive in almost any conditions that we can. Or any place an Englishman may have ever been. The Chinese Houses, Collinisa heterophylla and Sticky Chinese Houses, Collinsia tinctoria are also hosts for the Variable Checkerspot. The experts argue as to the correct species for this group of variable butterflys. The adults eat nectar from a wide variety of flowers.

Variable Checkerspot Butterfly, Eyphydryas chalcidona

Variable Checkerspot Butterfly sipping nectar from a Pincushion flower. High resolution photos are part of our garden image collection.

Variable Checkerspot Caterpillar, Eyphydryas chalcidona

Variable Checkerspot Caterpillar emerging from its tent on a Bush Penstemon. High resolution photos are part of our garden image collection.

Host Plants for the Variable Checkerspot Butterfly

Achillea Apple Blossom
Achillea Cerise Queen
Achillea clavennae
Achillea filipendulina Coronation Gold
Achillea hoffnung
Achillea kellereri
Achillea lanulosa
Achillea Moonshine
Achillea Paprika
Achillea Pomegranate
Achillea ptarmica
Achillea Salmon Beauty
Achillea Sonoma Coast
Achillea Terracotta
Achillea The Beacon
Achillea tomentosa
Agoseris grandiflora
Apocynum cannabinum
Asteriscus maritimus
Asteriscus sericeus
Baileya multiradiata
Buddleia Black Knight
Buddleia Harlequin
Buddleia Honeycomb
Buddleia Lochinch
Buddleia marrubifolia
Buddleia Miss Molly
Buddleia Nanho Purple
Buddleia Pink Delight
Buddleia White Profusion
Centranthus ruber
Cirsium occidentale
Cistus Bennet's White
Cistus Blanche
Cistus ladanifer maculatus
Cistus purpureus
Cistus salviifolius
Cistus skanbergii
Cistus Sunset
Collinsia heterophylla
Collinsia tinctoria
Coreopsis gigantea
Coreopsis Flying Saucers
Coreopsis nana
Coreopsis verticillata Moonbeam
Diplacus aurantiacus * Sticky Monkeyflower
Diplacus longiflorus * Southern Bush Monkeyflower
Echium candicans
Echium gentianoides Tajanaste
Echium wildprettii
Encelia californica
Encelia farinosa
Erigeron argentatus
Erigeron Bountiful
Erigeron karvinskianus
Erigeron Sea Breeze
Erigeron Wayne Roderick
Eriodictyon crassifolium * Felt Leaved Yerba Santa
Eriodictyon tomentosum * Woolly Yerba Santa
Eriogonum arborescens
Eriogonum cinereum
Eriogonum crocatum
Eriogonum fasciculatum
Eriogonum giganteum
Eriogonum grande rubescens
Eriogonum incanum
Eriogonum umbellatum
Eriophyllum confertiflorum
Eriophyllum staechadifolium
Keckiella antirrhinoides * Yellow Bush Penstemon, Snapdragon Penstemon, Chaparral Beardtongue
Keckiella breviflora * Yawning Penstemon
Keckiella cordifolia * Bush Penstemon
Keckiella ternata * Blue Stemmed Penstemon, Scarlet Keckiella, Summer Bush Penstemon
Leucophyllum frutescens * Texas Ranger
Leucophyllum Green Cloud * Green Cloud Texas Ranger
Leucophyllum laevigatum * Chihuahuan Sage
Mimulus aurantiacus * Sticky Monkeyflower
Mimulus bigelovii * Biglow's Monkeyflower
Mimulus cardinalis * Cardinal Monkeyflower
Mimulus flemingii
Mimulus Georgie Red
Mimulus guttatus * Seep Monkey Flower, Yellow Monkey Flower, Golden Monkey Flower
Mimulus Jack
Mimulus Jelly Bean Dark Pink * Jelly Bean Dark Pink Monkeyflower
Mimulus Jelly Bean Orange * Jelly Bean Orange Monkeyflower
Mimulus longiflorus * Southern Bush Monkeyflower
Mimulus Midnight
Mimulus puniceus
Mimulus Ruby Silver
Penstemon Apple Blossom
Penstemon Burgundy Brew
Penstemon centranthifolius
Penstemon cobaea
Penstemon eatonii
Penstemon Evelyn
Penstemon Firebird
Penstemon grinnellii
Penstemon heterophyllus
Penstemon Hidcote Pink
Penstemon Husker's Red
Penstemon Margarita BOP
Penstemon Midnight
Penstemon parryi
Penstemon Raven
Penstemon Red Rocks
Penstemon spectabilis
Penstemon triflorus
Phygelius African Queen * African Queen Cape Fuchsia
Phygelius capensis
Phygelius Moonraker
Phygelius Pink Sensation
Prunus ilicifolia
Prunus ilicifolia lyonii
Scabiosa atropurpurea Black Knight * Black Knight Pincushion Flower
Scabiosa atropurpurea Royal Ruby * Royal Ruby Pincushion Flower
Scabiosa caucasica Fama Deep Blue * Deep Blue Pincushion Flower
Scabiosa causasica Perfecta Blue * Perfecta Blue Pincushion Flower
Scabiosa columbaria Butterfly Blue * Butterfly Blue Pincushion Flower
Scabuisa columbaria Pink Mist * Pink Mist Pinchushion Flower
Scabisoa cretica * Balaeric Pincushion Flower
Scabiosa farinosa * Dwarf Pincushion Flower
Scabiosa ochroleuca * Yellow Pincushion Flower
Stachys albens * White Hedge Nettle
Tagetes lemmonii
Tagetes lucida
Trichostema lanatum * Woolly Blue Curls
Trichostema lanceolatum * Vinegar Weed
Trichostema Midnight Magic * Midnight Magic Blue Curls
Tithonia rotundifolia * Mexican Sunflower
Verbena bonariensis * Purpletop Vervain
Verbena lilacina De La Mina
Verbena lilacina Paseo Rancho
Verbena rigida