Health System’s new Healing Butterfly Garden featured in Free Press, Michigan Daily

Patients, families, faculty and staff gathered Tuesday in the Health System courtyard to mark the opening of the new Healing Butterfly Garden.

The garden, located near the old Mott building, features plant and flower species native to Michigan, and on Tuesday became home to more than 100 Monarch and Painted Lady butterflies.

Brendon Weil, a staff specialist of quality improvement at UMHS, who helped make the garden a reality, told the Free Press his love of butterflies stems from childhood experiences with his grandmother.

“She would get home from doing whatever grandmothers do, and I would be on the porch waiting. … She had made me a net, and I would catch (butterflies) and wait for her to come home, and we’d pull out the book so we could identify it,” Weil told the Free Press.

Weil told the Michigan Daily that butterflies are a fitting creature for a health care setting.

“It’s like a patient diagnosed with cancer who thinks the world is over,” Weil said. “That individual, whether they’re a child or adult, goes through a whole metamorphosis. They come out on the other side just as beautiful as they were as when they went into it.”

To read more about the garden and Tuesday’s butterfly release and ribbon-cutting, visit the Detroit Free Press and the Michigan Daily.