Buddleia davidii, Butterfly Bush
Red Admiral nectaring, Sussex County, New Jersey, courtesy of Rebekah Garris.
Great Spangled Fritillary nectaring, Sussex County, New Jersey, courtesy of Rebekah Garris.
On the other hand, the butterfly bush at my parent's home in Pottersville, New Jersey, does very well and has lots of winged visitors."
This large deciduous shrub grows up to ten feet tall and produces arching canes that typically die back to the ground in Zones 5 and 6.
Leaves are opposite, long (4" to 10") and relatively narrow (1" to 3" wide). The flowers are very showy and fragrant on 4" to 10" long upright or nodding racemes. The dark purple cultivar seems to be the most cold resistant. Other cultivars can be pink, red, purple or white. When I have winter mulched/protected with a thick layer of leaves, the stems under the leaves have survived P.E.I.'s cold winters and have produced shoots upwards of two feet from the ground the following spring. More often than not, however, die back is usually to the ground level.
The bush prefers full sun and needs fertile soil. It is easily transplanted and can be propagated from seeds or by cuttings. Too much moisture can kill cuttings.
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