Do Deer Eat Butterfly Bush?

Butterfly Bush (Buddleia) gardens are becoming more common, and has become very popular. Beautiful shrubs like these are great for landscaping because they draw butterflies, bees, hummingbirds, and other good bugs.

Butterflies are drawn to buddleias like moths to a light because they smell like honey. Once they get there, they find that the flowers are full of juice. On hot, sunny afternoons, you can often see a butterfly bush in the yard with a lot of butterflies on the flowers.

Buddleias also draw in other bugs, like moths, and the red ones really draw in hummingbirds. In other words, it’s not just a name; it’s a plant event.

Learn more about why people love this simple plant.

Keeping Deer Away From Butterfly Bushes

Do Deer Eat Butterfly Bush

You don’t have to keep deer away from a butterfly flower. This shrub looks great and is very colorful in woodland parks and wildlife places. It can be used as a fence around plants that are more likely to be grazed on to protect them. You can also plant them near wooded places where deer like to hang out. From what I’ve seen, deer don’t bother these plants.

If the deer in your area are really hungry, you might want to use a spray that keeps them away from your butterfly trees and other plants. After it rains, the spray will need to be put on again once a week for the first month. Once the deer know which plants to stay away from, the number of times it is used can be lowered.

Will Butterfly Bush Come Back After Deer Eat Them

In general, deer don’t hurt butterfly bushes. If they do (which fawns sometimes do), the plant grows quickly and should grow back the same season.

Butterfly Bush Varieties

Butterfly bushes are many-flowered shrubs that come in many different types with flowers of many colors. The flower that grew on springtime new wood. They flower from the middle of summer until it gets cold. The flowers smell like honey, and the smell is best in the middle of the day.

You can grow a lot of different kinds of butterfly bush. A lot of them are in the Buddleia davidii group. These come from Tibet and China and can handle cold weather the best. Most of the time, these types can handle being outside in USDA zones 5 through 10.

Some varieties are “Black Knight,” which has beautiful branches and flowers that are a deep purple color, and “Hot Raspberry,” which has flowers that are a raspberry pink color.

The tall species can get up to 12 feet tall and look great as a background plant in a flower garden. They have been bred to grow to be 2 to 4 feet tall, which makes them easier to use in modern gardens.

Butterfly Bush Uses In The Garden

  • In the back of your flower bed, grow tall types of butterfly bushes. They will look nice next to plants that butterflies like, like echinacea and butterfly weed.
  • Butterfly bushes smell great and look beautiful all summer long. Place them near windows or doors to enjoy both.
  • Plus, you can put butterfly bushes in a mixed-shrub fence with other interesting shrubs like native Elderberry, colorful Hydrangeas, or other shrubs to make the summer and fall more colorful and interesting.
  • Deer don’t like butterfly bushes, so it shouldn’t be a problem to put them near the edge of a forest or in a shrub border.
  • If you live somewhere that gets cold in the winter, don’t put butterfly bushes where they will be hit by wind. Instead, cover them with a burlap barrier put up in the fall to keep the stems from dying back.
  • Cut down plants and put them in the middle or front of your yard, or even in rock gardens. These won’t need to be cut back as much to flower well, and they’ll stay a more doable size. There are smaller types of butterfly bush that do well in pots.
  • Add purple Salvias, Milkweed, Ornamental Grasses, and Asters to a bed with butterfly plants.

Butterfly Bush Planting Tips

Butterfly Bush

  • Because these bigger shrubs bloom so much and the dead flowers can look bad, you should regularly remove the flower heads or cut flowers for bouquets.
  • To keep your plants from self-seeding, try to regularly remove the spent flowers all summer long. This will keep the seeds from setting.
  • There are states like Oregon, Washington, and Hawaii that think butterfly bushes are invasive, so be careful not to let them spread into the wild.
  • Their original range is very open and sunny, and they are one of the first species to move into new areas. In one season, they can plant a lot of seeds. In the wild, shrubs and trees that grow taller finally push the plants out of the way. Without these built-in checks, these seeds can become a problem in the yard. Killing the dead flowers will help stop them from spreading.
  • Butterfly plants don’t do as well in colder places.


Are Butterfly Bushes Invasive?

Yes, butterfly plants can spread quickly in some places. If invasiveness is a problem, it’s important to check with local rules and think about native alternatives.

What Are Some Other Deer-Resistant Plants?

Other plants that deer won’t eat are marigolds, lavender, and yarrow. Deer don’t like these plants as much because they smell strong and are tough.

Can Butterfly Bushes Survive Harsh Winters?

Butterfly plants are tough and can live in colder places, but they might die back to the ground in really bad winters. Cutting back and fertilizing can help keep them safe.

How Often Should I Water My Butterfly Bush?

Butterfly bushes do not need to be watered often and do best in dirt that drains well. Allow the earth to dry out between waterings and water them deeply but not too often.

Is It Necessary To Prune Butterfly Bushes?

Yes, trimming is suggested to help plants grow new leaves and flowers. Cut back your butterfly bush early in the spring, before it starts to grow new leaves.