Close this search box.

Butterfly Bush (Buddleia x)

Enjoy the multitude of butterflies this bush will draw.

It isn’t surprising that a shrub called the Butterfly Bush (Buddleia or buddleja) are extraordinary magnets for butterflies and other pollinators.  This impressive flowering shrub produces colorful flowers in late summer and fall. Their distinctive blossoms come in a range of colours from white and yellow to orange, pink, violet and purple and are displayed in long panicles at the end of the branches.   The flowers are rich in nectar and their honey-like fragrance makes them highly attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds, moths, bees, and other beneficial insects.

Originally, the Butterfly Bush was only available as a tall plant with an average height of 7 feet or more.   This colourful, long-lasting shrub is now available in many shorter cultivars that are easier to accommodate in the average home garden.  The height makes these a great screen for summer privacy and color, while the smaller varieties can be tucked into any sunny garden.  When planting, you should be mindful of the size of the variety you have chosen and plant it accordingly.

Buddleia is a very hardy plant as it can tolerate less than ideal conditions which makes it very easy to grow.  Butterfly Bush does prefer a sunny location, requiring about 8 hours of sun per day.  Like most plants, they do not like wet feet and an area with good drainage is the best location.

As in most cases when planting shrubs and trees, we suggest spreading mulch to support the growth of your buddleia.  Mulch is very helpful in retaining moisture in the summer time and it also adds protection to  the roots during those frosty winter months.  When spread thick enough, mulch can help keep grass and weeds at bay.

Once established, these plants grow quite easily so you can just sit back and enjoy the show!

Black Knight Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii Black Knight) A very striking butterfly bush cultivar which features almost black flowers. It is a deciduous shrub with an arching, spreading habit which typically grows 6-8' tall if not cut back in late winter and 4-5' tall if cut back. Features spike-like 4-10" long terminal clusters of very dark purple flowers which bloom from June to September and sometimes to first frost. Flowers are fragrant.

Humdinger Magenta Munchkin Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii Humdinger Magenta Munchkin) Munchkin describes this shrub very well as it maintains a compact, refined habit - not at all like the original, taller varieties. Fits easily into smaller gardens where the visits from these delightful pollinators will keep you entertained.

Ile de France Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii Black Knight) Ooh la la - this flowering shrub bears intense deep purple, conical, nectar-rich flowers, which attract butterflies and bees from July to September. To encourage later flowering (which can benefit butterflies), cut plants back to the base in May.

Lo & Behold® Blue Chip Butterfly Bush PW

(Buddleia x davidii Lo & Behold® Blue Chip) A graceful, smaller shrub that grows 2' to 2.5', is studded with sweetly scented panicles of intense blue flowers. The flowers are produced on the ends of the droopy branches from mid-summer through to fall, sometimes even to first frost.

Lo & Behold® Blue Chip Jr. Butterfly Bush PW

(Buddleia x davidii Lo & Behold® Blue Chip Jr.) The Lo & Behold 'Blue Chip' Jr. is an even better version than the original Blue Chip butterfly bush. Look to this slightly smaller variety with a height of 18" - 2' 6" and a spread of 20" - 2'4" to show bluer flowers and a much earlier bloom time, ensuring even more color, beauty, and butterflies.

Miss Molly Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii Miss Molly) The fragrant flowers of this non-invasive variety are the closest to red of any butterfly bush. Enjoy the bountiful display offragrant, intensely coloured blooms all summer long without deadheading. One of the newer varieties that reaches just 4-5'/1.2-1.5m tall, so it's easy to work into any sunny landscape.

Miss Ruby Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii Miss Ruby) This new butterfly bush stands out for several reasons. First, it has remarkably rich, magenta flowers that are more vibrant than that of any other buddleia variety. This shrub is the perfect compact size, from 48" to 60" both high and wide. Easy to care for, tolerant of drought and non-invasive.

Miss Violet Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii Miss Violet) A compact, mounding shrub with graceful, arching stems brimming with vibrant flower color, just like her sisters, 'Miss Molly' and 'Miss Ruby'. In this case she has loads of dark purple-violet summer flowers. A seedless, non-invasive specimen with notable heat tolerance and a butterfly magnet.

Nanho Blue Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii Nanho Blue) Super hardy, this is one of the easiest shrubs to grow and one of the most striking of all the Butterfly Bush varieities with it's brilliant purple-blue flowers all season long. It grows quickly each spring and summer to a compact 5 to 6 feet high and 4 to 5 feet around in our climate. If you want to attract butterflies, hummingbirds, and songbirds to your yard, be sure to include several of these shrubs.

Pink Delight Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii Pink Delight) Delightful indeed, this medium sized shrub features spectacular summer colour from the conical clusters of sweetly scented, bright pink flowers. This shrub makes such a nice background along a fence. Use it as an accent plant or several for a perfect sunny border.

Pugster® Amethyst Butterfly Bush PW

(Buddleia x Pugster® Ameythst) The newest member of the Pugster® family, it features full sized flowers on a dwarf plant! This compact butterfly bush reaches just 2' tall and wide but has the large, full flowers normally seen on a much larger plant. It blooms non-stop from early summer through frost with amethyst-toned flowers, each with a tiny yellow-orange eye in the center.

Pugster® Blue Butterfly Bush PW

(Buddleia x Pugster® Blue) This carefree shrub is a prolific bloomer without deadheading. Sounds like the perfect shrub! Large, dense, fragrant, delightful blue flower panicles on a tidy, compact plant. A hardy, thick stemmed variety that provides continuous summer color well into fall.

Pugster® Pink Butterfly Bush PW

(Buddleia x Pugster® Pink) Named after the "Pug" for its cute, short stocky body, this little Butterfly bush grows just 2' tall by 2'-3' wide. Gorgeous, bright pink flowers bloom and rebloom all summer long. These shrubs are perfect for small yards as they offer full sized flowers on compact shrubs. The blooms are fragrant and will attract pollinators of all sorts to your yard!

Pugster® White Butterfly Bush PW

(Buddleia x Pugster® White) Another prolific bloomer with deadheading. Large, dense, fragrant, exquisite, crisp white flower panicles on a tidy, compact plant provides continuous summer color well into fall. A perfect carefree summer blooming specimen for warm, sunny, small gardens and containers.

Royal Red Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii Royal Red) Spectacular summer color from conical clusters of rich, purple-red flowers. The nectar-rich flowers have a splendid fragrance. A beautiful selection with a naturally relaxed habit, this sun lover is hardy and requires 8 or more hours of sun daily.

White Profusion Butterfly Bush

(Buddleia x davidii White Profusion) Butterfly Bushes are hard to miss but this award-winning variety is quite impressive, especially at night. A steady, reliable bloomer of pure white flowers with delightful yellow eyes. The tiny, individual flowers bloom in a profusion of long, dense trusses. Leaves, with their soft, silvery undersides, provide an elegant complement to the pristine white of the blooms.

Share this article