We have taken organic and included habitat in the mix. We are now a certified butterfly sanctuary

Aloha!!!    We all love to eat organic.  We all love organic coffee.   But even organic agriculture can have a devastating effect on members of our environment if extra precautions and measures are not taken to ensure that the use of organic persticides and fertilizers don't harm unitended organisms.  Butterflies and Bees are what scientist call indicator species.  When present bees and butterflies denote a healthy ecosystem.  Butterflies and Bees are also some of the first unintended victims of incorrect pesticide use.  Butterflies and Bees are everywhere on our farm.  We have been tending bees for almost a decade, and over the past two years we have been working on creating habitat and food for the local butterflies.  With the help of guidelines from the North American Butterfly Association we have created spray free butterfly sanctuary gardens throughout our farm.  All the organic pesticides that we spray that may harm bees and butterflies are done at times when they are not flying.  It is a lot of extra work to build the butterfly gardens and spray in the evening but we are now a 16 acre certified butterfly garden on top of the worlds best coffee farm.  We plant a variety of caterpillar host plants from the asclepia family or milkweeds.  The milkweed sap protects the caterpillar by making them poisonous to birds.  Planting these particular host plants is perhaps the most important thing we can provide to boost the local butterfly population. We also provide a variety of nectar producing plants such as zinnia, sunflowers, buddleia, selosia, and others.  Butterflies often emerge from the coffee fields and forests to feed and lay their eggs at our butterfly gardens or as we jokingly call them butterfly retreat centers.  Our children love watching the colorful caterpillars slowly turn into butterflies in there chrysalis on the milkweed.  Many a hatching has been overlooked by our 5 and 8 year old butterfly experts, and we love watching all the butterflies flutter about throughout the day as we work.  It doesnt get happier than that!!!  Anyone can help the butterflies.  And a certified butterfly sanctuary can be done in pots on a condo patio.  Go to Naba.org to learn more about helping the butterflies in your area...  If you plant it they will come.....