If you’re like me, nothing sets the heart fluttering quite like the sight of a hummingbird zipping around the garden. Their iridescent wings, pinpoint precision, and spirited personalities turn any space into a nature-filled wonderland.
But attracting these winged jewels to your yard isn’t just a case of hanging a feeder and hoping for the best. Nope, it involves careful garden planning and a particular choice of plants. However, before you grab your gardening gloves in a panic, I’m here to share a little secret with you.
The key lies in a delightful selection of perennial flowers, hardy enough to return year after year, with blooms attractive enough to pull in hummingbirds from miles around.
Are you ready to transform your garden into a hummingbird haven? Let’s dive in!
1. Bee Balm (Monarda didyma):
Not only does it have a name that sounds like it’s straight out of a fairytale, but Bee Balm is a perennial powerhouse when it comes to attracting hummingbirds.
Its vibrant, spiky blooms come in a variety of colors from pink to scarlet, and its pleasant aroma is like an open invitation for hummingbirds. Keep it healthy with full sun, and you’ll be enjoying a live hummingbird show by midsummer!
2. Lupines (Lupinus):
Tall and vibrant, Lupines are like skyscrapers for hummingbirds, offering nectar-rich blooms on lofty stalks. Available in a range of colors, their striking beauty and architectural structure will add drama to your garden, attracting more than just your feathery friends.
Remember, Lupines can be a bit finicky, so find a spot in your garden with full sun and well-draining soil to keep them happy.
3. Foxgloves (Digitalis purpurea):
Step aside, Sherlock, there’s a new detective in town, and their name is… you! Just watch as hummingbirds play hide-and-seek in the tubular, bell-shaped flowers of your Foxgloves.
These plants are an absolute spectacle in the garden, and their tall, spike-like stems make it an exciting aerial playground for hummingbirds.
4. Daylilies (Hemerocallis):
As reliable as an old friend, Daylilies are the steadfast souls of the garden. These sun-loving perennials are easy to care for and boast vibrant, trumpet-shaped flowers that are, frankly, hummingbird irresistible. Don’t be surprised if you see your new winged pals doing a bit of a happy dance around these!
5. Salvia (Salvia spp.):
If you’re not already on team Salvia, it’s time to convert. With its spiky, elongated clusters of tiny flowers, this plant is like a buffet for hummingbirds, offering nectar-rich sustenance galore.
They’re available in a multitude of colors, and the best part? They’re remarkably hardy, resisting drought, deer, and any doubts you might have about your gardening skills.
6. Columbines (Aquilegia):
Imagine your garden as a dance floor and the Columbines as the disco balls. Their unique, lantern-like flowers dangle elegantly from thin stems, inviting hummingbirds to a delightful nectar-filled dance.
But don’t let their delicate appearance fool you. Columbines are sturdy, adaptable, and, with a little shade, can thrive in most garden settings.
7. Hostas (Hosta):
Who says you need a sun-soaked garden to attract hummingbirds? Let’s hear it for the shade lovers out there! Hostas are a dream come true for gardens with a little less sunlight.
Their large, robust leaves make them a standout, but it’s their lily-like flowers that will have the hummingbirds zooming in for a closer look.
8. Coral Bells (Heuchera):
Adding a pop of color and charm to your garden, Coral Bells are a hummingbird’s delight. Their tall, thin stems bear clusters of tiny bell-shaped flowers that hummingbirds just can’t resist. Plus, their attractive foliage keeps the garden looking vibrant even when the flowers are taking a breather.
9. Fuchsia (Fuchsia spp.):
Fuchsia is like the garden’s chandelier—extravagant, showy, and downright stunning. Its unique, drooping flowers make an excellent feeding spot for our hummingbird buddies. These plants are versatile, equally at home in hanging baskets or in the ground, making them the perfect adornment for any garden.
10. Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis):
With a name like Cardinal Flower, you can already guess this plant’s trump card—it’s the color! These bold, bright red flowers are like flashing neon signs for hummingbirds. With enough sunlight and moist soil, they’ll give your garden a pop of color and a flurry of winged activity.
11. Trumpet Vine (Campsis radicans):
No, it doesn’t play jazz, but the Trumpet Vine does indeed make quite the fanfare in the garden. Its bright, trumpet-shaped flowers are high-volume nectar producers, making them a favorite among hummingbirds.
This vigorous climber can quickly cover trellises and walls, so let it loose and watch your garden become a hummingbird hotspot!
Hummingbird Garden Tips
Now that we’ve discovered the irresistible allure of these floral guests, let’s dive deeper into the world of hummingbird-friendly gardening. These additional tips and tricks will help to transform your space into a hummingbird haven.
Plant in clusters:
Here’s a fun fact: hummingbirds are like the art critics of the animal kingdom, drawn to the big, bold swatches of color. Planting your perennials in clusters or groupings, rather than scattered or solitary specimens, creates an impressive, eye-catching display.
It’s the equivalent of having a giant “Open for Business” sign that’s visible to these airborne visitors from miles away. In a world where size matters, bigger and brighter is always better.
Offer a water source:
You might think that hummingbirds are all about the nectar, but these little aviators also appreciate a good splash now and then. Imagine your garden as a hummingbird spa resort. The nectar-filled flowers are the buffet, and a birdbath or water mister is the poolside service.
Providing these amenities not only gives your hummingbird guests a place to cool down and clean up, but also makes your garden an even more attractive stopover on their migratory route. So go on, add that water feature you’ve been dreaming about!
In our quest to attract these feathered friends, we must also consider their health and wellbeing. Avoid using harmful pesticides and herbicides in your garden. These chemicals can contaminate the nectar and potentially harm the hummingbirds.
Plus, they’re entirely unnecessary! With your own personal squadron of hummingbirds zipping around the garden, they’ll take care of those pesky insects for you. They’re nature’s own little pest control units, and they work entirely for free! It’s a win-win situation.
Add some perches:
After all that darting, diving, and hover-feeding, hummingbirds need a place to rest those speedy wings of theirs. And no, they can’t borrow your hammock. Instead, consider providing natural perches such as shrubs or small trees near your flower beds.
It’s like installing little hummingbird rest stops along the nectar highway. These perches offer them a spot to take a breather, preen, and keep a watchful eye over their territory. More importantly, these rest spots will increase the chances of them sticking around longer, making your garden their favorite pit-stop.
So there you have it! Your go-to guide for transforming your garden into a hummingbird’s dream destination. With these beautiful perennials and helpful tips, your garden will soon be the talk of the hummingbird town.
Remember, the key is to provide them with a variety of nectar-rich flowers and a safe, comfortable habitat. Now go on, get out there and start gardening! Remember, the only thing better than a garden full of beautiful flowers is a garden full of beautiful flowers and hummingbirds!