Avatar for Supershervelle
Jul 20, 2015 9:04 PM CST

Hi I'm new and the butterfly fly bush is my favorite. I am trying to learn as much as possible about them.
I have two in my front yard and while they don't look like they are dying, the bottoms don't look very "full". They are 3 years old and are currently about 10 feet tall. It's July and I live in Tennessee. We've had barely any rain, but I water enough, and I don't think I overdo it.
The rest of the bush looks great with lots of new blooms and shoots. Is it normal for the bottom of the bush to start to not become as full as the summer goes on?
Any info or help would be super! Thanks!
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Jul 22, 2015 4:06 PM CST
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
I don't think of Butterfly Bushes as ever having a really full form. They are sorta gangly looking open shrubs.
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Jul 22, 2015 6:15 PM CST
Name: Celia
West Valley City, Utah (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Photography Irises Plant Identifier Hummingbirder Birds
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Cat Lover Butterflies Enjoys or suffers cold winters
The 3 I tried all died. My neighbors looks ragged all the time but keeps blooming prettily every year.
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Jul 22, 2015 7:01 PM CST
Name: JoJo
Texas (Zone 8b)
Bee Lover Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Irises
Hibiscus Garden Art Frogs and Toads Dragonflies Dog Lover Daylilies
I had never had good luck with them, then I found this one
My weeping butterfly stays full and blooms all summer and into the fall if we aren't going through weeks of 3 digit temps Smiling
Gardening is learning, learning, learning. That's the fun of them.
You're always learning !
Helen Mirren
Last edited by Abigail May 20, 2021 2:55 PM Icon for preview
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Jul 24, 2015 6:49 PM CST
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
Never heard of a weeping butterfly bush before.
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Jul 24, 2015 7:08 PM CST
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River Twp, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member Bee Lover Butterflies Birds I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Seed Starter Vegetable Grower Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters
Welcome to All Things Plants, @Supershervelle !

Just to be clear, are you talking about Buddleia (or Buddleja) ?

Like Rita, mine have always pretty much been "gangly looking open shrubs."
“Think occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer
C/F temp conversion
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Jul 24, 2015 8:15 PM CST
Name: JoJo
Texas (Zone 8b)
Bee Lover Region: Texas Enjoys or suffers hot summers Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Native Plants and Wildflowers Irises
Hibiscus Garden Art Frogs and Toads Dragonflies Dog Lover Daylilies
@newyorkrita and @weedwhacker, I have a pic of mine in garden photos and here is another link, although not a good pic

http://davesgarden.com/guides/...
Gardening is learning, learning, learning. That's the fun of them.
You're always learning !
Helen Mirren
Avatar for Supershervelle
Jul 25, 2015 6:50 AM CST

Thank you for all of the messages.
To weedwhacker: they are definately butterfly bushes. Thanks for double checking with me. In fact I have 18 of them. White , blue , cran-raz, red, indigo, purple, royal. And two yellow ones being shipped. I am fascinated by them, love the smell, the attraction of butterfly's ,and they do well for me.
The ones I inquired about are in their 3rd season and last year they got to almost 12 feet tall. I just didn't remember the bottom being so "bare." But I gotta say, the tops are healthy and keep getting new shoots on them. I'm just trying to learn as much as possible about them. I get a little over- nervous when things don't look right!
Hope Yall have a super day!!
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Jul 25, 2015 10:08 AM CST
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Amaryllis Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Orchids Master Gardener: Florida Irises
Herbs Region: Florida Vegetable Grower Daylilies Birds Cat Lover
I would try cutting them back severely - maybe down to 3ft. or so - this fall after they lose their leaves. Then next spring they should put on shorter, bushy growth rather than just getting taller and ganglier each year.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
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Jul 25, 2015 1:14 PM CST
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Region: Ukraine Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Dog Lover
dyzzypyxxy said:I would try cutting them back severely - maybe down to 3ft. or so - this fall after they lose their leaves. Then next spring they should put on shorter, bushy growth rather than just getting taller and ganglier each year.


I agree
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others. ~~ Sharon Brown
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Jul 26, 2015 2:07 PM CST
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
Yup, cut them back in the Fall. Unless you have cold winters. Then cut then early spring, just before leaves would come.
Avatar for Shell
Jul 26, 2015 10:10 PM CST
(Zone 7a)
Hummingbirder
All of the above! I have a butterfly bush that is almost 12 years old. Last year it was looking pretty gangly and bare in spots and didn't bloom well at all. I figured it had lived it's life and was saying goodbye. That being said, I cut it back to ALMOST a stump and hoped for the best....here is a picture of what it looks like now! (Can you spot the Monarch?) LOL
Thumb of 2015-07-27/Shell/f5fbbe
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Jul 27, 2015 5:13 AM CST
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Region: Ukraine Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Dog Lover
Welcome! to ATP Shell!
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others. ~~ Sharon Brown
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Jul 27, 2015 6:52 PM CST
Plants Admin
Name: Suzanne/Sue
Sebastopol, CA (Zone 9a)
Sunset Zone 15
Plant Database Moderator Region: California Cottage Gardener Garden Photography Roses Clematis
Houseplants Foliage Fan Keeper of Poultry Dog Lover Birds Hummingbirder
We have wonderful photos of Butterfly Bush (Buddleja lindleyana) right here on ATP, no need to link away to another database. nodding
My gardening Blog!
Handmade quilts, new & vintage fabrics in my Etsy store. Summer Song Cottage
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Avatar for Shell
Jul 28, 2015 11:40 AM CST
(Zone 7a)
Hummingbirder
Thank you for the warm welcome! Big Grin
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