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Woolly Butterfly Bush

Buddleia marrubiifolia Woolly Butterfly Bush
Category Shrub
Size 5' x 5'
Flower Color Orange to Gold
Flower Season Spring to Summer
Exposure Full Sun
Water Low
Growth Rate Moderate
Hardiness 20°F
Notes: Attracts Butterflies


The woolly butterfly bush (Buddleia marrubifolia) is endemic to Texas and the Chihuahuan Desert, growing at elevations from 1800 to 3800 feet. It is a rugged, drought tolerant shrub suitable for xeriscaping. It grows to about 5 feet tall and 5 feet wide, maintaining a dense form. Its small, velvety leaves are a silvery, gray-green color. From March to August, woolly butterfly bush blooms intricate, globe-shaped flowers. These orange colored flowers are extremely attractive to butterflies which find them a rich source of nectar. Combine woolly buterfly bush with succulents and green-leafed plants for interesting contrast.


Plant woolly butterfly bush in full sun locations and in soil with good drainage. It does not grow well in heavy clay soils. Water established woolly butterfly bush every two weeks in the summer; once a month in the winter. Woolly butterfly bush will become floppy and subject to rot if given too much water. Prune woolly butterfly bush in the fall to shape and to remove dead or damaged stems. Prune it to within a foot or two of the ground every two or three years to reinvigorate this shrub. Wooly butterfly bush is not particularly susceptible to pests or diseases.

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