The One Show – Bristol – Buddleja

Butterflies love Buddlejas
Butterflies love Buddlejas

The BBC’s One Show is my televisual guilty secret.

Apart from the fact that it coincides with my finishing things I absolutely have to do each day, indoors and out, I like the cheerful content and the chemistry between the presenters. And sometimes they have really interesting features.

Tonight’s programme visited Bristol (of which I am proud to be a citizen, originally) with Mike Dilger talking about plants that had perhaps been introduced from around the world via the docks during their heyday in the 19th centry.  He highlighted Buddleia, or –  to be more au courant with my spelling – Buddleja, and most importantly B. Dividii.

Even when I was very small and walking to school each day in Clifton in the 1950’s, I was very acutely aware of this plant.  It poked out from every crevice in the eerie  relics of down-at-the-heel houses on the steep cliffs that bordered the cities heavily bombed docks (an area now largely embellished by the presence of the fabulously restored S.S. Great Britain, and some fairly chi-chi housing and attendant wine bars, of course).  Then I called it ‘bombed-site-weed’.  But the scent of the lax, unkempt bushes and the proliferation of butterflies clearly made an impression.

In my little garden there is scarcely space for any of Buddleja dividii’s close realtions, the most lovely silvery-leafed Buddleja ‘Lochinch’, more compact and delicate Buddleja ‘Nano Blue’, nor the spring-flowering. fluid-outlined, tree-like Buddleja alternnifolia.

More’s the pity. All of them are lovely, tolerant, easy-to-grow and rewarding plants.

And their honey-scent is truly gorgeous.


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