When the blooms are spent, they transform into round red seed heads (or ‘buttons’), which contain pairs of nutlets that are eagerly sought by birds and other wildlife. And the leaves of this deciduous shrub are host to the striking hydrangea sphinx moth (Darapsa versicolor) https://bugguide.net/node/view/5367 and Titan sphinx moth (Aellopos titan).
Button bush loves wet feet, and can even withstand flooding. It’s tolerant of all soil types and grows in sun or shade (though blooms will be more abundant in a sunny location). It quickly grows to its mature height of 6-8 feet, and can be pruned right down to the ground in spring to control any tendency towards legginess.
This undemanding and rewarding native really is a host with the most!
Author: Lisa Schneider
Photo: MaryAnne@Adobe Stock