Buddleja davidii 'Royal Red'

Buddleja Royal Red

Buddleja davidii

Butterfly bush

  • Position: full or partial shade
  • Soil: well-drained soil
  • Flowering period: July to September
  • Foliage: deciduous
  • Hardiness: fully hardy

Buddleja davidii is the perfect shrub for a summer border. Its arching branches are covered with showy conical panicles from June to August which are attractive to butterflies.

Buddleja davidii comes in white, pink, dark purple, red-purple, lavender-blue. It will do best in a sunny position, in well-drained soil.

Tall butterfly bushes

Buddleja d. ‘Black Knight’

For deep purple fragrant flowers choose Buddleja d. ‘Black Knight. It’s a vigorous, fast-growing variety with grey lance-shaped leaves.

Buddleja d. ‘Royal Red’

Buddleja d. ‘Royal Red’ produces handsome long spikes of purple-red flowers.

Buddleja d. ‘White Profusion’

Also popular is Buddleja d. ‘White Profusion’. This buddleja brings striking clusters of snow-white flowers to the garden.

Buddleja d. ‘Pink Delight’

Buddleja d. ‘Pink Delight’ offers panicles of pink flowers with lovely, small orange eyes. All of these varieties can reach a height of 3,5m and a spread of 3m.

Buddleja davidii
Buddleja d. ‘White Profusion’                 Buddleja d. ‘Lilac Chip’

Dwarf butterfly bushes

Butterfly ‘Free Petite’

If you are short of space try compact butterfly bushes such as Butterfly ‘Free Petite’ which is low-growing and comes in shades that range from purple-pink, lavender-blue and white. It stays compact and attains a height of 70cm and a spread of 60cm. Ideal for growing in a pot.


Pruning buddleja davidii. Butterfly bush flowers on the current season’s growth and need to be pruned every year. In March cut back the previous year’s flowering stems to two or three buds.

If the bush is overcrowded, also remove some of the older branches.

Buddleja snoeien
New growth Buddleja davidii                 New bud  Buddleja davidii


Deadhead the butterfly bush as the flowers fade to encourage new flowers. Cut back the faded brown flower heads to a pair of leaves. After a couple of weeks, new flower buds will appear.

Plant combination

Butterfly bush looks good with a range of partners such as Echinacea , Lavandula, Ruta graveolens, Stachys, Hibiscus, and Ornamental grasses.

Echinacea roze