Do Butterfly Bushes Do Well in Colorado?

Butterfly bushes can fill your landscape with color while attracting butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds. The uniquely shaped flowers are quite charming and are accompanied by an aromatic fragrance. This shrub would complement your garden, whether grown as a single plant or several shrubs. Today’s article will focus on growing butterfly bushes in Colorado.

Is The Butterfly Bush a Colorado Native?

Butterfly Bush Colorado

This deciduous plant isn’t a native in the US. It originated from China and found its way into America many years ago. Currently, there are plenty of species of the Buddleia davidii.

Even though it’s not a native, this shrub can add beauty to your environment. Its charming blooms are quite attractive, and they can be pink, purple, or white, depending on the variety. The fact that it attracts pollinators makes it a favorite amongst gardeners in Colorado. Plus, it is safe for pets and human beings. There are plenty of reasons why you should plant butterfly bushes. But let’s see if it can survive the Colorado climate.

Can You Grow Butterfly Bushes in Colorado?

Butterfly Bush Colorado

This shrub is very tough despite having a naturally attractive shape and evergreen foliage. It grows best in hardiness zones 5 to 10. Colorado growing zones range from 3 to 7. When you compare these figures, it’s evident that butterfly bush can only grow without complications in certain parts of Colorado. Before you embark on planting this shrub, confirm which hardiness zone your location falls under. If you happen to be in Colorado zones 5 to 7, you can proceed to look for the best variety of the butterfly bush.

For those who live in Colorado zones 3 and 4, you should know that this plant can withstand temperatures of -15 degrees F. In zones 3 and 4, the winters reach -40- and -30-degrees F, respectively. In these zones, butterfly bushes will die during winter. If you must plant butterfly bush in Colorado zones 3 and 4, treat it as an annual and not a perennial. However, gardeners in Colorado zones 5, 6, and 7 can plant the butterfly bush as a perennial.

Knowing where your garden is located in the Colorado zones will help you determine whether the climate is ideal for butterfly bush growth or not. In case it isn’t, you can always grow it as an annual or find another alternative that suits your climatic conditions.

Planting and Caring for a Butterfly Bush in Colorado

Butterfly Bush Colorado

After confirming the climatic conditions your garden in Colorado falls under, the next move is to start planting. To reduce the maintenance needs of your butterfly bush, you must carefully select where to grow it. Find an area that receives full sun or partial shade. Adequate light is crucial for the blossoming of the butterfly bush.

Ensure that you plant it in well-drained soil and water it every week. Too much water can lead to root rot. Plant the butterfly bush in an area that has room for growth. The occasional pruning can help you maintain a smaller size. The soil in most parts of Colorado is relatively fertile. Therefore, there is no need for fertilizer.

When growing butterfly bushes, you need to be patient since they sometimes don’t leaf out with the rest of the plants. Do not panic when everything else turns green and your butterfly bushes are still dormant. Don’t forget to prune them regularly. In Colorado, butterfly bushes can grow quite large.  When this happens, they get an unkempt look.

Gardeners living in Colorado zones 5 and 6 should be mindful of the effects of winter on the butterfly bush. Avoid planting during fall. This is because when winter approaches, your butterfly bushes may not have developed strong roots and can die when the topsoil freezes. Planting in spring enables the plants to develop throughout summer.

How to Choose the Best Butterfly Bush Variety

Butterfly bushes come in many varieties. If it’s your first time dealing with this plant, it can be hard to pick the ideal variety. The first thing you need to consider is the flowers. Butterfly bushes are available in many flower colors. There are white, blue, pink, and purple varieties. Choose a color that will spice up your landscape.

Secondly, you should consider the size. On average, this shrub can grow up to 8 feet tall. Some cultivars are categorized as dwarfs, and others can reach up to 20 inches tall. It’s also essential to evaluate the foliage of various butterfly bush varieties.

After settling on a variety, butterfly bushes serve many purposes. They can be planted at the back of the border. You can also plant them at the front as long as you choose a dwarf variety and prune it regularly. If you are more of an indoor gardener, you can pot a butterfly bush.

Butterfly Bush Colorado: Final Thoughts

There are certain parts here in Colorado where gardeners can comfortably grow the butterfly bush. These are zones 5 to 7. The Buddleia davidii has many characteristics which make it a common shrub in Colorado.

It will attract Monarchs and Swallowtails as they migrate from one area to another. Besides attracting pollinators, this shrub looks fantastic, especially if it’s taken proper care of. As long as your garden is in the recommended Colorado climatic zone, you should enjoy all the benefits of growing butterfly bushes.