We didn't choose this Buddleja - it chose us. We all know it as the Butterfly Bush but apparently it was called the Bombsite Bush during the war years as it has an invasive nature and it sprang up on any waste ground. In fact it is banned in some USA states because it is classified as a noxious weed!
Well, five years ago part of the hawthorne hedge was removed from the field side of our lane and this Buddleja was definitely NOT there then ... but I'm very glad it is here now. It's right outside our window and gives hours of entertainment this time of year.
In the half hour I spent watching Peacock butterflies were chasing the Small Tortoiseshells; Small Whites were dancing round and unsettling Large Whites; a Red Admiral (or Admirable as they used to be called) paid a brief visit while a Comma posed for ages in the sunshine.
The flowers not covered in butterflies were covered in bees.
This particular shrub is a Buddleja davidii. It was named after Father Armand David (1826 - 1900), a missionary Catholic priest, zoologist and botanist who worked in China. It was Armand David who first discovered the Giant Panda together with 200 other wild animals and 807 birds many of which had never been described in scientific journals before. He discovered 52 new species of Rhododendrons and 40 new Primulae.
If I had chosen to grow a Buddleja I would have planted a darker purple, a red one or a white one.
This shrub has grown to 15 feet in just four years and it has spread to about the same width so I'm glad it is on the lane and not in the garden!