I live in Rhode Island and I planted the bush last spring. It did beautifully all summer long. Now, here we are in May and I don't see any buds on the bush. Do you think it's dead? When should it start having buds?
Butterfly Bush is a perennial that will die back to the ground each year.
They are hardy to zone 5, though they often have trouble wintering over at times. It is common for them to do well for a few seasons and then die off.
Extra mulching can help during the winter.
Give your plant a bit more time to see if anything appears.
If the roots are still alive the new growth will come from the ground and not likely on the stems or branches.