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Trees and Shrubs: Buddleja davidii

Botanical name: Buddleja davidii

Common name: butterfly bush

also known as (summer-lilac, orange eye, Buddleia davidii)

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created by:
chief cultivator

Mercer island, Wa

at a glance

Soil: damp, alkaline, sand
Zones: 5a thru 9b

invasive, bird attracting, butterfly attracting, bee attracting

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description for "Trees and Shrubs: Buddleja davidii"

The butterfly bush's sprays of lavender to lilac blossoms with orange eyes (hence one of the common names - orange eye) are a powerful attractant for the winged creatures, making it a worthwhile addition to informal and naturalistic settings. Blooms on new wood. Grey-green foliage. Buddleja is a colorful group of predominantly late summer blooming shrubs that are highly valued for mixing with perennial flowers, to anchor the back of the flower bed, and add much needed late season color. Buddlejas need a good compost-enriched garden soil and like regular watering to put on their best show. For best flowering, cut back the entire bush in early spring to about 1/3 of its original height; the more new vigorous growth the plant has, the better the show of fall flowers. All Buddlejas are a "must" for butterfly and hummingbird lovers. Because this plant needs longer periods of warm weather to establish its roots properly, it is not recommended for fall planting in Zones 3-6. Potentially invasive in southern climates. -- edited by dtd pbcouchman


Buddleja davidii is native to China where it was introduced to cultivation in 1890.

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