Buddleja davidii

These are some of the cultivars and hybrids I've grown.

The Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit (RHS AGM).
Cultivars marked 'AGM' have been awarded the RHS Award of Garden Merit, because they have proved to be reliable in a real-world situation and a plant that performs well. `

Some cultivars are subject to Plant Variety Rights (identified in the text by PVR), which means they should not be propagated without a licence, where a small fee is payable to the breeder.

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African Queen Purple

One of the darker cultivars with rich purple flowers. A tall plant.

Autumn Beauty Light lilac

A very late flowering plant, not classified as a B. davidii although it looks like one. Also called Clive Farrell and Beijing.

Black Knight Dark Purple

Probably the darkest Buddleja of all, deep deep colour and strong honeyed scent. The flowers have less of a red shade when compared to African Queen and bigger orange eyes. It can become a large shrub, almost a tree unless kept well pruned. AGM

Blue Horizon Blue

Just awarded an AGM by the RHS, this is a much better blue cultivar than Empire Blue. A Very upright plant with flowers that are probably the truest blue of any. AGM

Border Beauty Dark Pink

One of the better purple-pinks, upright growth habit and dark stems. Some confusion with the name - sometimes mistaken for Boskoop Beauty.

Darent Valley White.

A new white Buddleja found growing wild in Kent. Long panicles and good growth habit. Just awarded a RHS AGM.
Photo by Gerald Roberts. AGM

Dartmoor Deep lilac-mauve.

Unusual large branched flowers. This is a very large spreading cultivar, often with a rather lax habit, but no other Buddlejahas flowers of this size. Sadly, the colour is very ordinary. AGM

Ecolonia Lavender-lilac

A fairly restrained Buddleja with good grey-green foliage and pale bluish-lilac flowers. It forms a neat bush if pruned regularly.

Ellen's Blue Dark violet Blue

From America, this is probably a seedling of Lochinch. Very dark violet-blue flowers. AGM.

Empire Blue Blue-violet

Once the only choice of blue Buddleja, actually more of a very deep violet. Flowers are small but finely scented and the plant has an excellent upright habit for a large cultivar. Now put on the 'Sunset List' by the RHS so has lost the AGM.

Glasnevin Hybrid Pale Powder Blue

Sometimes incorrectly described as a B. fallowiana hybrid from Scotland, it is in fact a 'Nanhoensis' hybrid from Glasnevin Gardens, Ireland. Pale powder blue flowers on a small spreading shrub with foliage and a growth habit that resembles the 'Nanhoensis' type.

Gonglepod Lilac

Nice long panicles, usually with two round bunches of flowers at the base. The leaves show Nanhoensis in its ancestry.

Grey Dawn Violet/grey

Striking branched grey-blue flowers, like a blue Dartmoor. Opens with darker flowers that fade to the characteristic grey. Can get large and spreading if not pruned.

Gulliver Pinky-lilac

Bred more recently than the Butterfly series below at East Malling Research in Kent. It is a cross between Pink Delight and Nanho White. Massive conical pinky-lilac flowers up to 6 inches across. The plant is medium sized and not dwarf but quite neat in growth habit. (PVR)

Ile de France Deep lilac

Many plants claim to be the true Ile de France and confusion reigns. Mine is an upright shrub with dark-lilac to purple flowers. A large plant with decent flowers.

Les Kneale Pale lilac white

The palest lilac you can get without actually being white. Also has much paler foliage, almost lime green, than normal.

Lilac Moon Pale Lilac

A cultivar from the National Collection at the Lavender Garden, Gloucestershire. Nice pale, creamy lilac flowers with good pale foliage. Wide rather than tall, not likely to exceed 2 metres in height.

Miss Ruby Intense pink

A new 'red' cultivar from the USA and available in the UK from Bransford-Webbs. Supposed to be the most red, but it is actually a very fetching deep pink. Sugar Plum below is much closer to a true red. It says on the label that it should stay relatively small. PVR.
Awarded the RHS AGM subject to availability.

(Buddma PVR)
Dark pink

This is a new floriferous dwarf from Holland described as having pink-purple flowers and lime-green to yellow foliage, which is its main selling point. It comes from Plantipp Nurseries, Netherlands.

Nanho Blue Blue

One of the earliest cultivars, Nanho Blue has small dark grey-green leaves and long denim-blue flowers. Small if pruned properly, but a messy and straggly shrub if not. In autumn it developes winter foliage which is intensely grey on attractive bronze stems. Other names have been used for this cultivar: Mongo; Nanho Petite Indigo; Petite Indigo.
Now put on the 'Sunset list' by the RHS so could lose the RHS AGM.

Nanho Purple Purple

A cross between Nanho Blue and Royal Red, Nanho Purple has the small grey leaves of the Nanohoensis sub-species and bright arching purple flowers. Also named: Monum; Nanho Petite Plum; Petite Purple. AGM

Orpheus Blue

Yet another great cultivar from the Lavender Garden. The colour of the flowers and the plant are very like Blue Horizon. But the flowers have a distinctive white eye around the orange centre.

Panache Deep Blue-mauve

Deep blue-purple flowers, branched like Dartmoor. Very interesting flowers but the plant has trouble supporting their weight so it does tend to flop.

Persephone Mauve

Another excellent plant from the Lavender Garden. Soft green-grey foliage, excellent upright shape and uniform mauve flowers with an intense red eye.

Pink Delight Pink

Probably the best pink cultivar with big brash flowers. Neat bush with greyish foliage from its B.fallowiana ancestry. Other pink cultivars such as Pink Perfection and Pink Charming seem to be the same plant. AGM

Pink Spread Deep pink

Also call Pink Spreader. Deeper than Pink Delight, it has a really luminous colour. This is not a common cultivar despite the eye-catching flowers. Apparently given to a spreading rather than upright habit, hence the name.

Pixie Blue Light blue

Not pixie in size, actually a rather big cultivar. The light blue panicles are shaped like pixie hats, possibly? The same as Dart's Papillon Bleu, as perhaps it should be more properly known.

Royal Red Maroon

Still one of the best colours going, Royal Red dates back to the 1920s. Tall plant with large flowers of a rich maroon-purple. AGM

Shire Blue Medium Blue

Yet another from the Lavender Garden, mid-blue, grey foliage and upright habit. The petals of the individual florets are reflexed, giving the panicle a unique look.

Sugar Plum Red pink

A plant from Peter Moore at Longstock Nursery - a cross between Summer Beauty and Royal Red. Smaller than Royal Red and more robust than Summer Beauty, it is the closest to red yet. (PVR)

Summer Beauty Deep rose pink

A sibling of Pink Delight with deep rose pink flowers on a small and upright shrub. One of the best colours of any Buddleja but the plant can be sensitive and it is about the only B. davidii cultivar where it is difficult to strike cuttings. Which probably explains why it isn't more common. Both Sugar Plum and Miss Ruby are similar.

Summerhouse Blue Blue

Pale blue flowers, compact bush and dark grey-green foliage. A random seedling from the Longstock National Collection.

Two Tones Blue/purple

This looks like there is some Nanhoensis in the background with small leaves. It grows larger, though. The flowers appear to be dark purple/blue but on closer inspection have an interesting mosaic effect of blue and purple florets. Actually, this mosaic-look is a fairly common phenomenon but Two Tones is more consistant than average.

White Profusion White

It's a white Buddleja with nice big flowers and an AGM from the RHS. The flowers are quite refined with a small yellow eye. Although it will grow large it is more upright and the flowers held more erect than many white cultivars. AGM

Variegated foliage

Burncross Violet

A cultivar from Blooms that appears to be a dwarf variety but otherwise quite similar to Variegata. I have found it a bit delicate.

Harlequin Maroon

The original variegated Buddleja. It is probably a sport of Royal Red but the flowers have a slighty different hue. It is prone to reversion so watch out for those all-green shoots. The white leaf margins are smaller than on Variegata. Masquerade (syn. Notbud) is supposed to be an improvement but as I have not seen it sold for a while so it probably isn't. Red Admiral and Royal Red Variegata are similar or even the same plant.

Santana Maroon

A different type of variegation this time. Leaves have green centres with variable wide yellow margins. Probably a sport from Royal Red again and, like Harlequin, the flowers are smaller as well as a slightly changed shade of maroon. Reversion happens in Santana, too. Leila Kapila is a very similar plant with even less green to the leaves, if you can believe there is a real difference.

Variegata Pale Violet

syn.: Florence. Much deeper white variegation than others. Variegata seems to be the same as Florence.

Dwarf Cultivars

Butterfly series

Developed at the East Malling Research Station in Kent by Elizabeth Keep, these are smaller compact shrubs which flower profusely. All have alternative trade-names and have PVR. Marbled White or MARKEEP (not shown) is an fine white cultivar.

Adonis Blue Blue

syn.- ADOKEEP. The darkest navy blue on a small bush. Only downside is a slightly open habit rather than a nice dense shrub.

Camberwell Beauty Dark lilac-purple

syn.- CAMKEEP. Undeservedly awarded the AGM by the RHS in 2010. Described as being like a miniature Dartmoor. The foliage has serrated edges and it stays quite small like all the Butterfly series. The flowers are branched but disappointing as they do not open all together on the panicle, and it often reverts to plain flowers. AGM

Peacock Lilac pink

syn.- PEAKEEP. A good deep pink on a smallish bush. Flowers are big for the size of shrub, although the growth habit can be very sparse. The foliage yellows badly come September.

Purple Emperor Purple

syn.- PYRKEEP. Easily the best of the series. Abundant purple blooms on a small shrub, the leaves are uniquely long and thin.

Buzz Series

Bred at Thompson & Morgan, these are super-small Buddlejas suitable for containers. Unlike the complex hybrid Lo and Behold® hybrids like 'Blue Chip', these are carefully selected B. davidii. Not expected to get above 1.5 metres height and spread, they can be still be profuse bloomers. The colours below are those available readily in th UK, but I believe there are a few more around. All are subject to Plant Variety Rights (PVR).

Buzz Candy Pink Pink

Bright pink flowers and an upright growth habit.

Buzz Ivory White

Small with white flowers. I've found it difficult to establish.

Buzz Lavender Lavender

Flower colour is average but remarkably big blooms on such a small plant.

Buzz Magenta Magenta

Flowers are bright magenta, like a tiny Royal Reb.

Buzz Midnight Dark Blue

One of the darkest cultivars available. Also called Buzz Indigo in the USA.

Buzz Red Cerise Pink

The brightest cerise pink flowers. Also called Buzz Velvet.

Buzz Sky Blue Blue-violet

Sky-blue? Actually purple flowers that fade gradually to a lighter violet. Great flowers on a remarkably small plant.


Pink Panther Pink

syn.: 'RuttenBU2016'. A small cultivar from France, excellent true pink flowers.

White Ball White

A very small plant, ball shaped, with small perfectly white flowers. It is an example of a genetic trait called congested-growth which is usually linked to white flowers.

B. davidii x B. fallowiana

Bishop's Violet Violet-mauve

An older hybrid from Treseder's nursery in Cornwall. Hardy and vigorous.

Lochinch Blue

A popular hybrid with nice light grey leaves and pale blue flowers. Good shape bush, too. AGM

West Hill Lavender

A sibling of Lochinch. It's a more vigorous shrub with lilac to pale blue flowers. The panicles are long and open giving them a feathery look. Awarded the RHS AGM in 2010.

The B.x weyeriana hybrids are on a separate page as there is much to say about them.



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