The first butterfly bush variety to produce multi-colored blossoms of lavender, yellow, and orange, it is quite tolerant of drought and heat.
A dwarf variety feet , it has a compact appearance with sturdy branches that can survive cold weathers better than most other short varieties; considered non-invasive. Hardiness Zone: 5 to 9 A taller variety, growing up to 12 feet, it is one of the butterfly bushes less tolerant to winter. Grows fast, attaining heights of around feet at maturity, the compact tiny white flowers are perfect for cuttings.
Growing around 8 feet tall, producing long pure white flowerheads, these look good when planted with bright colored flowers. Growing around feet in both height and width, it is a good choice for mixed borders due to its non-invasive, hardy nature. With striking yellow-orange fragrant flowers, these feet high plants are suitable for large gardens but do not survive in wet, cold conditions. Eight-inch flowerheads blooming around fall-summer, these plants are relatively shorter feet , and suitable for growing in containers.
Growing around 6 feet high, its branches tend to spread around, giving the plant a fuller appearance. Dense, feet tall shrubs with a somewhat rounded appearance, suitable for mixed garden hedges, flowers suitable for cuttings. One of the shorter varieties feet , these are are non-invasive, with the flowers being suitable for cutting. Around feet tall, the non-invasive variety with a rapid growth rate, it is suitable for sunny locations in gardens.
An English butterfly bush variety, it grows around 4 feet high and 5 feet wide, producing dark blue flowerheads. Orange Ball Butterfly Bush Buddleja globosa. Hardiness Zone: Rather short, bushy plants growing about feet tall, these are suitable for small gardens and indoor planting.
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Wooly Butterfly Bush Buddleja marrubiifolia. Hardiness Zone: 7 Points to Consider Before Introducing Butterfly Bush As mentioned above, they appear in invasive plant lists in many states of US, so check with the authorities before picking any variety. Another thing worth knowing is that despite their name, they are not beneficial to butterflies in any way apart from offering their sweet nectar.
None of the butterfly bushes serve even as a secondary host plant for any caterpillar. Despite being perennials, most cultivars die in winter, especially in the Northern regions, with the roots growing fresh stems again the next season. So, they are not suitable if you want a low-maintenance evergreen garden. Generally hardy in nature, they do not take too much hard work and can get established in almost any type of well-drained soil.
These plants have a fibrous root system, instead of a taproot, which means the roots get their nutrients from the upper layers of soil. Where to plant them: Any sunny spot in your garden that remains reasonably dry throughout the year.
It is possible to start a butterfly bush from branch cuttings, but it is more common to get a small plant from nursery so you can be sure that it will not turn invasive. Propagating from seeds is often avoided for the same reason. During the first growing season, make sure to keep the soil around the roots thoroughly moist, but not waterlogged.
Just water well when the soil seems dry.
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The Butterfly Bush
How did these plants come to occupy such large areas?
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And what effect did their spread across continents have on their diversification and evolution? Buddleja nitida, from Central America, is one of more than species in the genus that John Chau studies. Buddleja davidii, native to central China, is a popular garden shrub but has become invasive in the Pacific Northwest.
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John Chau , a UW biology graduate student in the lab of Richard Olmstead , herbarium curator and UW biology professor, is studying one such plant group with a wide distribution, the genus Buddleja. The Butterfly-bush, Buddleja davidii , with its large, purple, bee- and butterfly-attracting clusters of flowers in the summer, is a familiar sight in gardens in the Seattle area and as an invasive weed on roadsides and riverbanks.
Buddleja davidii, originally from central China, is just one of more than a hundred species in the genus, whose ranges extend across eastern Asia, southern Africa, Madagascar, and North and South America. For his research, Chau collected plants in China, South Africa, Peru, Bolivia, Costa Rica and California to obtain material for genetic analysis and determine the evolutionary history of this group.
These collections are now preserved at the Burke's Herbarium and have been supplemented by sampling from preserved specimens in other museums. By comparing variation in DNA sequences, the pattern of relationships among species can be inferred, which can then reveal different aspects of their evolutionary history, including where the plants lived in the past.
Chau found that Buddleja originated in southern Africa. From Africa, the group spread in separate events to Madagascar, Asia and the Americas.