Need advice about butterfly bush

gigi321(6)June 8, 2012

Planted large (about 6 ft tall) purple butterfly bush in full sun in front of my house back on Mother's Day. Some of the leaves at the bottom are starting to wilt and turn brown (dying) and some of the leaves look to have white powder-looking stuff on them. A few leaves look to have holes eaten in them. I'm new to planting flowers and would love any suggestions on how to hopefully bring this butterfly bush back to health! Thanks in advance for any advice!

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
gardengal48

I'd guess that watering, specifically not enough, is the primary cause of your problems. Plants planted in late spring in full sun will need frequent deep waterings (not a daily sprinkle) to keep the rootball adequately moist. Inadequate soil moisture coupled with high humidity can also be the recipe for powdery mildew, which the white powder-looking stuff may be. Would need a photo to confirm.

Neither the powder nor the munched leaves constitutes anything more than some minor cosmetic damage. The plant is tough enough to grow out of it with ease. Just keep it properly watered.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2012 at 2:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

Hi & welcome to Gardenweb.

Agree with gardengal, it just needs a chance to settle in. The fact that it's still alive since Mother's Day makes me very confident that it will pull through.

In general, BB's don't need much care once established. Just trim the dead flowers so new ones appear. Wait until spring, when new growth is starting to prune for shape and size. Fall pruning can be fatal to these short-lived shrubs.

The pieces you trim can be stuck in the ground for more bushes. I try to start a couple new ones somewhere every year because you never know when your BB will just die. From what I've read over the years on here, the farther south you go, the less risk of mysterious death (which I think is usually attributable to being too wet in the cold when people have trouble with them) but having just 1 BB can be very disappointing if it happens to you.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2012 at 9:25AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
gigi321(6)

Thank you so much for the advice. I don't have hose access where the bush is planted, but I have started watering it vigorously via buckets of water and it is already starting to look better and less "wilty."

I'm so glad to have found this forum and, again, appreciate the helpful advice! :)

    Bookmark   June 10, 2012 at 8:02PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Tiffany, purpleinopp GardenWeb, Z8b Opp, AL(8B AL)

Glad it's looking better!

You and your BB might get the most benefit out of water you have to carry by putting a milk jug at the base of the BB. Cut the top off of the jug so you can pour into it easily, and put a pinhole near the bottom on the side. As the water dribbles slowly out of the hole, it will be slow enough to be deeply absorbed right where it's needed. If it takes an hour or two to drip out, that's good. If you put the hole high enough that about an inch of water stays in the jug, it might not blow away. Might need a rock too so you don't have to go looking for it next time you water.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2012 at 11:06AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Newbie question about greenhouse
Hi everyone, I bought a small greenhouse from Ocean...
mcolangelo1221
Trisodium phosphate (TSP) use near plants and soil?
Hi all, painting my entrance way which has a small...
chickenschwarma
Dust & Insects in Seeds. Still OK to be planted?
Hi, i have a pack of wheatgrass from about a week ago....
rosche
killing weeds
I read what one member does to kill weeds around her...
CAPERNIUS
Does anyone read gardening books anymore?
Am I the only one who likes to read gardening books...
tanya117
Sponsored Products
kathy ireland Office by Bush Furniture New York Skyline 3-in-1 White TV Stand
Overstock.com
Bush Furniture 'Aero' Glass Top 2-door Curio Bookcase
Overstock.com
Bush Midnight Mist 59 Inch TV Stand Multicolor - VS44850-03
$293.99 | Hayneedle
David Trubridge Design | Flax Pendant Light - Natural
YLighting
Bush & Beach Rattan Barstool
| Dot & Bo
Hinkley Lighting | Monaco 4852 Wall Sconce
$239.00 | YLighting
Jura Capresso CoffeeTEAM GS 10 Cup Grind & Brew - 464.05
$172.42 | Hayneedle
Bush Stanford 47 inch TV Stand - VS53936-03
$232.99 | Hayneedle
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™