The botanic name has been the source of some confusion. By modern practice of botanical Latin, the spelling of a generic name made from ‘Buddle’ would be Buddleia, but Linnaeus in his Species Plantarum of 1753 and 1754 spelled it Buddleja,with the long i between two vowels, common in early modern orthography. The pronunciation of the long i in Buddleja as j is a common modern error. The International Code of Botanical Nomenclature has gradually changed to incorporate stricter rules about orthographic variants, and as of the 2006 edition requires (article 60, particularly 60.5) that Linnaeus’ spelling should be followed in this case.
The genus Buddleja is now included in the Scrophulariaceae family. It had earlier been classified in either the Buddlejaceae or Loganiaceae .
Buddleja davidii (spelling variant Buddleia davidii), also called summer lilac, butterfly-bush, or orange eye, is a species of flowering plant in the family Scrophulariaceae, native to Sichuan and Hubei provinces in central China, and also Japan. It is widely used as an ornamental plant, and many named varieties are in cultivation. B. davidii is named for the Basque missionary and explorer in China, Father Armand David, who first noticed the shrub. It was found near Ichang by Dr Augustine Henry about 1887 and sent to St Petersburg. Another botanist-missionary in China, Jean-André Soulié, sent seed to the French nursery Vilmorin, and B. davidii entered commerce in the 1890s.