I love seeing Buddleja davidii on waste ground it feels optimistic that even in a neglected area with no one weeding or watering- plants still manage to thrive and scent the air. But if space is limited it’s best to choose from dwarf cultivars especially those that sit comfortably in borders making an effective backdrop to other summer-flowering shrubs and perennials. Below is B.’Buzz Sky Blue’ which is bred to suit small gardens and is compact enough for a pot. In a large mixed border in S. Devon it sits surrounded by fennel and has been planted beside a window where the owners regularly watch Hummingbird Hawk moths, Jersey Tiger moths (most commonly found in S. Devon), Large Tortoiseshell, Red Admiral and Small Peacock butterflies.
Two of my own favourite buddlejas are B. davidii ‘Black Knight’ which has the darkest purple flowers and is a manageable size growing to 3 m and below the white B. davidii ‘White Profusion’.
I recently spotted Astrantia major in a country garden growing in profusion and self-seeding in almost total shade. I love the off-white, pin- cushiony flowers and that they last well when cut for a vase.