WHEN AND HOW TO PRUNE BACK BUDDLEIA

When and how to prune back Buddleia

Understandably, many gardeners will see Buddleia species and cultivars as little more than weeds. However despite their apparent ubiquity, their flowers are a valuable a nectar source for many species of butterfly (hence the common name of butterfly bush), and twenty species and cultivars have been awarded the prestigious Award of Garden Merit from the Royal Horticultural Society.

When and how to prune back Buddleia
Buddleia are most notable for their blooms, so to get the most out of your buddleia you need to prune them appropriately and at the right time of year.

Surprisingly, for the majority of species no regular pruning is required. That being said, Buddleia davidii species and cultivars (with an unchecked height and spread of over 3 metres) can be kept to a manageable size by pruning in March. Cut all of the previous years growth back to within 5-10 cm of the old wood. This will cause the plant to produce strong, erect stems and large flower clusters.

When and how to prune back Buddleia
Species such as Buddleia globosa and Buddleia colvilei flower on the previous year’s growth, should be lightly pruned after flowering by removing the faded clusters with approximately 5 cm of stem. Buddleia alternifolia can be kept neat and bushy by removing two-thirds of all stems after flowering.

After pruning always mulch the base of your Buddleia with well-rotted farm manure or garden compost. To help the following season's blooms you can also provide a high potash, slow or controlled release fertiliser.

For related articles click onto the following links:
HOW TO GROW BUDDLEIA DAVIDII
WHEN AND HOW TO PRUNE BACK BUDDLEIA
WHEN AND HOW TO PRUNE HEBES





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