The Truth About Butterflies and Buddleja vs. Native Plants

Posted by @clintbrown on
I recently learned that some native plant promoters are claiming that gardeners should not grow Buddleja (Butterfly Bush) because it fools butterflies into thinking it is a host plant. They claimed that the butterflies would deposit their eggs on the Buddleja and the offspring would die because Buddleja is not a proper host plant. However, I researched this claim and found it to be 100% FALSE!

The truth is that female butterflies only lay eggs on their host when they detect specific chemicals through taste organs called sensilla on their forelegs. They simply will not lay eggs on a host without verifying it to be the proper host.

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Although Buddlejas are not native and may be invasive in some areas, they do not harm a butterfly's offspring because a butterfly will not lay eggs on them. I have found Buddleja to be an excellent plant for attracting butterflies in my area. In addition, there are also new cultivars of Buddleja that don't produce seeds and are not invasive at all. If they are invasive in your area, consider checking them out. Here is an article about seedless Buddlejas:

Comments and discussion:
Thread Title Last Reply Replies
Butterfly Bush by jawang1 Feb 15, 2018 3:11 PM 0
Who would claim that? by BrendaVR Jul 29, 2015 9:42 AM 1
Thank you! by flaflwrgrl Dec 15, 2013 4:54 AM 31

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