WHO WE ARE
I’m the kind of person who when discovering something that brings joy to my life, believes that it will bring joy to others lives too. So you better believe I’m on the phone, on social media, and telling strangers in the store my new joyfilled discovery!
Why? Why do I do this? Why do I feel the need or even think that it would do anything else for anybody else but me? Because I feel like we’re all cut from the same canvas and a lifetime of experiences have us seeing things from different angles, but underneath, we all long for the most basic thing in life, joy.
What does any of this have to do with Hosting Butterflies? Well, it speaks to who I, Melissa Eikenberry, founder of Hosting Butterflies, am as a person and the motive behind the company.
I didn’t start this company to get rich and make millions of dollars, although I’m not opposed to such perks. No, I created this company because I discovered nature to be the greatest treasure hunt of all and one day I went looking for the map and key only to come up with a bunch of parchment paper that had to be pieced together.
The story of the treasure map began to unfold as I read the book Raising Butterflies in the Garden by Brend Dziedzic. I learned that most caterpillars are baby butterflies or moths and that not all moths are little white millers AAaand that caterpillars in our area are freaking COOL!! I was hooked, a whole new world was opened up to me. I was now going to raise every single caterpillar I could get my hands on…the Hickory Horned Devil, the Common Buckeye, and the Rosy Maple Moths being my holy grails for caterpillar rearing!
So I started asking everybody if they knew these things were in our area? I showed them pictures and they all ooo’d and aaahh’d just like I did. That didn’t set right with me. Why didn’t any of us know this? And we all worked at a garden center!
That’s when I KNEW, people will want to know this! People will want to know this joy nature provides and they don’t even have to change the way they live, because just knowing will change the way they live!!!!
You see, what happened to me was I learned about host plants and that certain butterflies and moths lay eggs on specific host plants because they’re picky eaters. This simple information made me WANT to plant the plants that host the species I want to raise. Then I found out all the benefits that came from native plants. That made me feel so good knowing that I was “accidentally” healing the environment. Man, that just felt so good! I feel it all over again writing this! That got me thinking about how happy I was that I was outside in nature and how in the last 3 years I’ve learned about more insects and plants than I ever have. But the greatest part of all is the great treasure hunt! Everybody LOVES a good egg hunt, but these aren’t candy filled eggs, these eggs are ffilled with what will soon be a caterpillar and then a butterfly!! I was finding BUTTERFLIES folks!!
AAaahh, the mental and physical reliefs of this was unmatched has to be shared! All of the benefits just from having that little bit of information. The best part of all??? You don’t have to hand rear them in habitats to enjoy nature’s treasures!! You can just observe from afar or, for my bird loving friends, feed your birds. So many benefits to having this little bit of information. But man, this information is hard to find, it really was like finding bits of parchment all over the internet and piecing together all the fragmented pieces. I began to put the pieces together, that’s when the treasure map became clear and Hosting Butterflies became an egg!
Just like that, I found a way to spread joy to the world!
Hosting Butterflies is the map to nature’s hidden treasures and the Treasure Tags are the keys to finding them!!