Butterfly Bush –
Butterfly bush is a popular plant used to attract butterflies and hummingbirds into gardens. Buddleia davidii ‘Peacock’, also known as ‘Peakeep’, was bred by Elizabeth Keep of East Malling, England, and is marketed by Proven Winners under the ColorChoice brand of flowering shrubs. ‘Peacock’ offers several desirable characteristics for today’s commercial growers, landscapers and gardeners. It has a compact growth habit — reaching only 4-5 ft. in height at maturity — and large, fragrant, 12- to 14-inch, rich-pink flower spikes.
The compact and tidy appearance of ‘Peacock’ lends itself to smaller gardens, mixed borders and container production. It is a prolific bloomer, producing flowers from mid-summer until frost. In many parts of the country it is produced and used as a shrub while in the North it is often treated as a perennial. ‘Peacock’ is fast growing and maintains its desirable plant habit throughout the growing season. Landscapers and gardeners use buddleia in sunny locations throughout USDA Hardiness Zones 5-10.
This is one example of how traditional nursery plants are becoming “”perennialized.”” Many perennial producers have grown various buddleia cultivars for years, but with new cultivars and strong marketing programs backing them, many more perennial growers will be adding this shrub and others to their production plans.
Winchester Gardens generally stocks this item.
Select a site with full sun and moist, well-drained soil.
Plant in spring or fall, spacing plants 5 to 10 feet apart, depending on the variety. Prepare the garden bed by using a garden fork or tiller to loosen the soil to a depth of 12 to 15 inches, then mix in a 2- to 4-inch layer of compost. Dig a hole twice the diameter of the pot the plant is in. Carefully remove the plant from its container and place it in the hole so the top of the rootball is level with the soil surface. Carefully fill in around the rootball and firm the soil gently. Water thoroughly.
Apply a thin layer of compost each spring, followed by a 2- to 4-inch layer of mulch to retain moisture and control weeds. Water plants during the summer if rainfall is less than 1 inch per week. Flowers are produced on new wood, so prune back old growth almost to the ground early each spring before any new growth emerges.