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#127471 Sep 10th, 2007 at 09:23 PM
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RaKitty Offline OP
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Hello everyone.. I am new to this site, so I do not really know what I am doing yet. Can anyone help me? I have had butterfly bushes for the last 5 years. They have grown beautifully. This year all 3 of them died (or have seemed to) They are spaced about 20 ft. away from eachother in a ^ formation.
I have no idea what has happened. I live in zone 5. They have braved all the harsh winters before. I cover them with mulch every winter, but this spring nothing happened. All my other plants in the flower garden are fine. Just the butterfly bushes. I usually cut them down to about 1 1/2 ft. each year.
Please HELP :(


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Northern Star
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Hi and welcome RaKitty.

I've had roses die like that, it was moles that had buried under ground and eaten the roots through the winter. Not sure if you have a mole problem where you are or not.

I am in zone 4 and can't get a butterfly bush to overwinter here at all, someone should be along soon to help with some other ideas.

Did you dig them out yet? I'm wondering if they had a root base still intact.


~~Tam~~Those who think country life is simple....have never lived on a farm.
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RaKitty Offline OP
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Well, I am not sure if we have moles or not. I am thinking no, due to no holes in the ground, etc. I have not dug them up yet hoping they could make it. I did find an ant colony near one of the bushes. I am not sure if that would have anything to do with it or not. All my other plants are not damaged. I am really confused. I will check on the mole thing. I was thinking that something could have got to the roots, but it just does not make sense...since my lillies, and irises are fine. Thank you so much! If anyone else has ideas... I would love to hear them.


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Northern Star
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Did you have a colder winter than normal last year. Butterfly bushes are only rated to zone 5, they might of died from a freeze. Is there any green underneath the stem if you scratch it with your nail?


~~Tam~~Those who think country life is simple....have never lived on a farm.
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RaKitty Offline OP
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No, we did not have a colder winter than normal. So that is where I am confused. They were well established also growing up to 7ft. tall with a huge spread. I can break the wood off and it it pretty dead. I have not tried to check the very bottom where they are planted. I did not want to damage the bushes at all. I will try that and let you know. Thank you for the responses and trying to help me figure out my dilema.


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I also had one that just died. When i pulled it up its root ball was intact but just dead. I figured it froze out. Now, the other 2 i have are just fine. Go figure.


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