Oh dear - but old age comes to all of us
And every time this happens we have a new planting opportunity What are you going to replace them with?
Well, I think I might replace one with Californian Blue. I have wanted that for a long time but haven't had any space for it. And I might put another Buddleia in because I think i may miss my butterfly plant!
My mother had a ceanothus Californian Blue, and it was frequently visited by little blue butterflies, possbly Holly Blues
I checked out the buddleias at work today; the one I can see from my window has loads of shoots on it - another has quite a few, the third has just one - they are all the same age - we will wait to see what happens.
A good technique is to lightly prune back some (or all) branches around the middle of May. This delays flowering until October, which extends the season and gives late food for butterflies.
That's what I often do Gold1locks. Sometimes I leave branches at the back if it's in a corner or against a fence/wall, so that there's a bit of height variation too. I know they're common but the butterflies don't care about fashion when they have all that free food!
Oh thank you so much for all this advice.
Dovefromabove: perhaps there is hope for my buddleia yet.
Gold1locks and Fairygirl: will try one more chop back in May - fingers crossed.
Verdun: Harlequin does look very pretty.
I've just looked for pruning advice here so thanks for the thread. Just for info. I have been taking off the dead flowers to prolong flowering as much as possible. I know it's been a wonderful summer, but there are still buds which look as though they might open. This was a seedling that had been in a pot for two years - it was finally planted in the ground last (apology for a ) summer, in August. It's fed many beautiful peacock, comma, and tortoiseshell butterflies, not to mention countless honey bees and bumble bees as well as looked and smelled wonderful. I might add that it was planted in an area previously devoid of anything that could be described as interesting for wildlife ( communal 'grassed' and overgrown space).
I'll prune in the spring, then.
This is all useful information from everybody, I have been asked to tidy up a Buddleia which is pretty old and has a very thick trunk, I'm wondering if I do cut it back to knee high in Feb whether it will shoot again. Also, is there anything you can feed it that will make the plant put more effort into creating flowers and not into massive growth, as this thing grows over a window.