Why Do It? Virginia

Virginia Cinch in the Briar Patch, photographed by Jeff Zablow at "Butterflies and Blooms in the Briar Patch," Eatonton, GA

2014 may have been the first year that Virginia C Linch put shovel into this former industrial site. I’m not sure. I know that when she enthusiastically invited me to visit in 2015, I jumped at the chance. See southern butterflies, drawn to a single  habitat in Georgia! Yippee!

I could not believe what Virginia and Bartow and not much more than a handful of volunteers had accomplished! They’d planted hundreds of perennials, bushes and trees. Host plants galore, nectaring plants, shade plants. The non native, but heroic Mexican sunflowers completed the nectar menu.

Those 4 visits in ’15 were fantastic. Virginia was friendly, helpful, informative and selfless, spotting butterflies and stepping aside, allowing me the opps that guys like me dream of.

2016 delivered me back to this Butterflies & Blooms in the Briar Patch Habitat. My posts here caught the attention of other Georgians, and a couple drove over to see what’s all the excitement about. When Virginia finds out that you’re on your way to visit, magic occurs, for 99.37% of the time, she slips away for 3.6 minutes, to make sure that you get that Warm Hello!

I sure met Georgia/Southern butterflies there: Giant swallowtails, Cloudless sulphurs, Gulf fritillaries, Sleepy oranges, Checkered skippers, Long tailed skippers and more. The excitement is always in the air: Will a Zebra Heliconian or a Great Purple Hairstreak make an appearance?

All I know who have met Virginia share this, and I’ve heard it again and again. When you’ve met Virginia, you’ll not ever forget her. It’s that special thing, that charisma thing. It’s ’cause folks are way too superficial, and here you’ve met one who is blatantly Genuine. She cherishes meeting you, and she Wants you to return, come again. I did, and want to, more times.

Here, Virginia began shooting me . . . so I shot her right back!