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Butterfly Bush

Just like the name suggests, these are magnets for butterflies and other pollinators like bees, moths, and hummingbirds. They’re great bang-for-your-buck in limited-space gardens, too, since they bloom for such a long time and offer fragrance to boot. So many varieties have appeared recently that it can be hard to keep track of them all; many are dwarf and easy to squeeze in the garden, though there are tall types too if you want to use them as a backdrop to a butterfly garden or mixed bed. Nearly seedless or sterile forms don’t waste any energy on seed and so re-bloom even more thoroughly than their “old-fashioned” counterparts. A simple pruning-back in late winter keeps things fresh. For a truly effective butterfly garden, be sure to include a mix of perennials and shrubs – especially natives, and include their host plants – to keep them interested and nourished.

by Miri Talabac, Woody Plant Buyer

Stephanie Fleming was raised at Behnke’s Nurseries in Beltsville. Her Mom, Sonja, was one of Albert & Rose Behnke’s four children. She was weeding from the moment she could walk and hiding as soon as she was old enough to run, so many weeds, so little time. Although she quickly learned how to pull out a perennial and get taken off of weed pulling duty.

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