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When you hear the name of this shrub, you aren’t quite sure what to think. These beautiful shrubs can come in many colors and even multicolors! They earned their name by being very appealing to butterflies. They attract them in droves and sometimes even a hummingbird or two. If you want to create an Alice in Wonderland type of aura in your garden, then you need these majestic shrubs.
Let’s learn a little bit more about the butterfly bush. They are actually native to Asia, to China, and the Himalayas, to be exact. They caught the eye of botanist Adam Buddle, which is of no surprise, due to their beauty and easy maintenance.
They are durable shrubs if there ever was one. They are as tough as weeds and can withstand storms and harsh conditions, and are even resistant to bugs and drought! No wonder Buddle decided to bring them over to England in 1774.
How to Choose a Butterfly Bush
Butterfly bushes are considered invasive plants, meaning that if they aren’t native to an area, they can push out the plants that are. If you plan on introducing these shrubs into your garden, follow our tips below to ensure you choose the right one.
1. Choose a seedless cultivar (type)
2. Choose one that will be the right size for your garden
3. Choose the color you like!
4. Choose one with a flower you find attractive.
How to Care for a Butterfly Bush
We mentioned that they were easy to care for and are resilient, but that doesn’t mean they don’t need proper attention and care.
Butterfly bushes require a lot of sunlight. They need to be planted outside in an area where they can be exposed to direct sunlight for at least 8 hours a day. While the bush itself is resistant to a lot of natural factors, its roots are actually prone to rotting.
Due to this, a butterfly bush needs good drainage to thrive. You need to make sure that it doesn’t spend excessive amounts of time in wet soil. Rainy seasons – especially wintertime – can be tough on your butterfly bush.
You need to prune them in the springtime. Make sure that green buds have started sprouting on your butterfly bush before you prune. Then cut just above the buds. Wait patiently for these green buds as it can take some time for them to emerge.
To keep beautiful butterfly bushes, you need to prune them. Since we mentioned that butterfly bushes need proper drainage, you can assume that they are sensitive to moisture – or at least their roots are.
This is why you shouldn’t overwater your butterfly bushes. They do handle everything else well, but their roots are extra sensitive. Try planting them in the summer or spring. Since they suffer the most during winter months, it’s important to give them enough time to establish themselves.
How Did They Earn Their Name?
Other than the obvious reason that they attract butterflies, what is the real reason they earned their name? Butterflies love their namesake shrub because the flowers contain high concentrations of nectar. They nourish the mature butterflies, but not the baby caterpillars.
To make sure that your garden is a butterfly haven, you need to plant other plants such as trees, perennials, and other shrubs to provide everything a butterfly needs in every stage of its life.
Choosing a Butterfly Bush
We won’t go too much into the science of these plants, so this is just an easy guide on the type of butterfly bush, depending on the color you want and the height and shape.
Inspired – This series of butterfly bushes come in pastel colors and have beautiful, large, and very fragrant flowers.
Lo and Behold – These bushes come in small mounds and can be seen in shades of pink, purple, and blue.
Miss – The Miss series have very bright and vivid flowers.
Pugster – The Pugster, as the name suggests, is a short and stocky shrub. They also have large flowers and come in beautiful colors.
Summer Skies – A popular Summer Sky color is purple, and these bushes are just as beautiful as the others.
Butterfly bushes are attractive to many people because they are beacons for lovely insects. They have many flowers in a single stem that comes in vivid colors and potent fragrances. This is hard to beat in terms of blooming duration.
Imagine your garden serving as a canvas for these bright hues in the spring and summertime while attracting butterflies and a hummingbird or two? The rich nectar provides sustenance for these creatures. It signifies when spring has sprung. Create a colorful garden by planting a few different kinds of butterfly bushes.