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Old 08-19-2010, 11:16 AM   #11
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I have some buddleia, too, which I inherited from the prior owner, and it also has butterflies but not as many.

There are many different kinds of lantana, and that may be the difference in our experience. I have "Miss Huff", which is reputed to be perennial here, despite being in zone 7b, and is orange, yellow and red; all other cultivars are annual. I also have "chapel hill", a new cultivar that is only yellow, and I haven't seen a single insect on it.

I planted a buttonbush in the spring, but it didn't bloom this year. I'm not sure if that is because it is the first year, or because it isn't getting enough sun. My property is wooded, so the best anything gets is 4-5 hrs in the afternoon and most get substantially less. Most butterfly attracters like sun, so I am seeing what will grow and what won't, and what attracts the most critters.
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Old 08-19-2010, 12:53 PM   #12
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thank you for taking the time to post this
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Old 08-19-2010, 05:38 PM   #13
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I too planted a buttonbush in the Spring that never flowered. I guess they need to maintain a certain size and age before they do. It did grow profusely, however, as it has access to constant moisture being in a large pot placed on a shelf in the pond in 4 -5" inches of water. I'm hoping for great things from it next year. Everything I read says it places near the top in pollinator attraction.

On the Lantana, I'll never grow it again. I'm going all native American and, except for the Buddlea, all aliens will be eliminated by next Spring. Just today, I finally got around to cutting out a blue-leafed hydrangea.

I'm not a purist, however. I planted a few native azaleas that are not naturally found in the Northeast - smooth azalea and flame azalea - this summer. I also planted some Prairie Liatris (Liatris pycnostachya) to see if the rage about its Monarch attracting power is true. So, though most of what I plant here is native to Massachusetts, as long as it is native to the east of the Rockies, I'll consider it. By the way, the azaleas and liatris were both purchased at the New England Wild Flower Society's plant sale and are contained in their gardens along with a wide variety of other natives not naturally found in Massachusetts.

I also purchased an Oakleaf Hydrangea there after reading descriptions at WG of it's magnetic garden personality. It too is part of the landscape in their gardens.
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Old 08-19-2010, 06:54 PM   #14
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Some good information in the link and comments.

Does anyone here grow Agastache foeniculum/blue giant hyssop/anise hyssop?
It is grown in the Lurie garden and every year it draws so many Monarch butterflies that it is hard to see the flowers on the 5-6 ft plants that are so big it would take two people to encircle one clump. I have never seen any plant draw that many butterflies. Walking through the Lurie during bloom is like being in one of those butterfly tents.You don't need fifty of those,one or two will do.
Mine never seem to get that big having to start over every year but do self seed so there are many of them.
Purple coneflowers and Joe-pye weed are excellent nectaring plants during bloom.

I think that a lot of flowers with a good nectar source, like a honeysuckle vine, a buttonbush,some trees or a big patch of flowers, like Joe-pye after a couple of years, does tend to bring more butterflies to the garden. There are purple coneflowers all over our garden. Some patches I started myself, others have self seeded. You would be amazed at the different insects, including many different species of butterfly, those coneflowers attract. Bees are a favorite.
I tend to big patches of flowers or grasses in this urban garden as well as trying for diversity in plant material. Our garden is a bit bigger than most in the area because it is a corner lot on a tee shaped alley. It is very covered with plants.

Anise Hyssop (Agastache foeniculum)
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Old 08-19-2010, 06:58 PM   #15
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I also have a couple of Liatris pycnostachya plants in the front yard. I think I saw a monarch on one of them once, but frankly, with all the Joe-Pye weed and milkweed around, they didn't seem to pay it all that much attention.
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Old 08-19-2010, 08:10 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amelanchier View Post
I also have a couple of Liatris pycnostachya plants in the front yard. I think I saw a monarch on one of them once, but frankly, with all the Joe-Pye weed and milkweed around, they didn't seem to pay it all that much attention.
Mine hasn't flowered yet. The blossoms are just about to open, maybe tomorrow! Of course, I just bought them this year, so they may be retarded from bloom by confinement in the pots.
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Old 08-19-2010, 11:10 PM   #17
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It's Liatris ligulistylis that has the reputation of being a magnet for monarchs.
Liatris* ligulistylis: UW-Stevens Point Freckmann Herbarium: Plant Details Page

I have both L. ligulistylis and L. pycnostachya, and the L. ligulistylis is definitely the favored plant in my yard. L. ligulistylis is the number one nectar plant of all the flowers that I have. L. pycnostachya has actually proven to be a rather poor nectar plant for butterflies in my area. The L pycnostachya is often available in the big box stores; I don't know if the nursery industry has messed with it or what, but they just don't attract the butterflies.
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Old 08-19-2010, 11:43 PM   #18
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Well, I grew the straight species from Prairie Moon seeds, so presumably those haven't been monkeyed with. It did attract bees, just didn't do much for the butterflies.
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Old 08-20-2010, 11:19 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cirsium View Post
It's Liatris ligulistylis that has the reputation of being a magnet for monarchs.
Liatris* ligulistylis: UW-Stevens Point Freckmann Herbarium: Plant Details Page

I have both L. ligulistylis and L. pycnostachya, and the L. ligulistylis is definitely the favored plant in my yard. L. ligulistylis is the number one nectar plant of all the flowers that I have. L. pycnostachya has actually proven to be a rather poor nectar plant for butterflies in my area. The L pycnostachya is often available in the big box stores; I don't know if the nursery industry has messed with it or what, but they just don't attract the butterflies.
Thanks for the edit, Cirsium. I did get the L. ligulistylis, but when reminding myself of the latin name I keyed in "prairie liatris" rather than "meadow liatris." In Bill Cullina's wildflower book, he speculates if the plant is releasing a hormone to increase pollination. The flower buds are opening today.
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Old 09-02-2010, 02:12 AM   #20
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[Gloria]Does anyone here grow Agastache foeniculum/blue giant hyssop/anise hyssop?
I grow anise hyssop, and I love the amount of fauna it attracts. Bees, butterflies and hummingbirds all love it.

Here are few of my anise hyssop photos. I winter sowed this from seed a few years ago and it's forming a nice clump now. Most of the purple blossoms are all done blooming, but it still smells wonderful.

Attracting Butterflies with Native Plants-img_4459.jpg Attracting Butterflies with Native Plants-img_4460.jpg
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