flowering quince and/or butterfly bush hardiness

ornithophilous(z4 MN)April 19, 2005

Anybody have any success with Chaenomeles or Buddleia in zone 4? If so, which species/cultivars have worked for you? I'm usually willing to try to stretch zone ratings of perennials I really want to have, but shrubs are a bit more of an investment. If it is only going to be a waste of time, effort, and money, I'll plant something else!

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randyw(4-NW Iowa)

We live in NW Iowa, about 45 miles SW of Worthington, MN. We have several butterfly bushes which usually overwinter just fine. Through the years we've probably had about a 75% success rate with them. "White Profusion" & the shorter "Nanho Indigo/Plum" varieties have been flawlessly hardy for us (even surviving some transplantings.) "Pink Delight" is more tentative; our first two died, but our current one was planted in 2001 & is just now leafing out. "Royal Red" we are experimenting with; one planted last year came through just fine. We have a dark one, probably "Black Knight", which has also been around since 2000. Two separate times we tried the yellow variety "Honeycomb", but both died for us, as did the variegated "Harlequin". Truth is, I don't think we've ever lost one that made it through its first winter. We usually leave the branches all winter for their interesting shape, pruning them this time of year. Usually we pile some leaves around the base as a mulch.

Best wishes,
Randy W.

    Bookmark   April 19, 2005 at 11:08PM
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lynnsherbs(4 Minnesota)

I've had mixed luck with Buddleias. The ones in raised beds seem to have the best chance (our yard is quite damp). When they do survive, they die all the way back to the ground, and they sleep until at least June.

I did see a huge Black Knight in a nursery in Pequot Lakes a few years ago. But they had it planted in the ground, in the corner of a dirt floor greenhouse. It was in full sun, and dry ground and sooo happy! Must have been at least 6 feet tall and covered with blooms.

Lynn

    Bookmark   April 21, 2005 at 12:43PM
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leaveswave(.)

I'd love to have a quince also, so I'm eager to see any personal experiences with them in this zone.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2005 at 7:03PM
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stefanb8(z7 MD)

Flowering quince typically bloom only up to the snowline, even though they're vegetatively hardy otherwise. The bushes with orange flowers that cut off in a straight line are almost comical to see in blossom. They do make attractive wall shrubs when trained and pruned flat, and this method may (or may not) provide extra shelter under some circumstances. There could be hardier variants in existence, otherwise low-growing cultivars certainly might be better recommended here.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2005 at 8:51PM
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stpaulite(z4 MN)

I've had mixed success with butterfly bush. The first one (Purple Nanho) didn't make it through the winter of '03/'04. However, I seem to be having better luck this year with a Black Knight butterfly bush. It's already leafing out, which is pretty miraculous considering I live in St. Paul. This time I planted it in a raised bed with good drainage and plenty of morning and afternoon sunlight. I have no idea if this made a difference. It's more likely the mild winter we had and the huge mound of straw I put on top of it is what kept it alive.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2005 at 10:46PM
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