Attract Hummingbirds to Your Garden

The most successful hummingbird gardens attract hummingbirds with a combination of feeders and bright, vivid floral displays of red, pink, or orange, purple, blue, and yellow nectar-filled flowers.  This combination not only attracts more hummingbirds, but it also encourages some to stay.  It is important to select plants that will bloom successively, beginning early in the spring and continuing through fall.  For instance, planting an early spring bloomer such as red-flowering currant will attract migrating hummingbirds.  Planting summer bloomers such as bee balm, red hot poker, fuchsia, foxgloves, and coral bells may encourage hummingbirds to stay in your garden.  Late summer and fall bloomers such as cardinal flowers, scarlet sage and phlox will attract fall migrating hummingbirds.  Providing trees and shrubs in your garden for shelter and perching also helps attract hummingbirds.  

If needed, add trees to your garden, and then plant annuals, perennials, shrubs, and vines to fill in the bare spots.  There is always a way to add bright hummingbird flowering plants to any garden.  Make the most of potted plants, window boxes, and hanging baskets.  Vines can be trained to grow up non-flowering trees, trellises, and fences. Use vines and shrubs to create visual barriers to distinguish one feeding territory from another.  Effective strategies to discourage aggressive hummingbirds from dominating or monopolizing your garden is to place two to three feeders in your garden, at least six feet apart or cluster them together.

It cannot be over stressed about the importance of protecting hummingbirds from poisoning through the use of insecticides and fungicides, especially systemic products.  These poisons may be absorbed by the plant and be consumed by the hummingbirds through the nectar.  Avoid the use of insecticides and fungicides!

To the delight of hummingbird gardeners, hummingbirds will return year after year to gardens that are designed to provide lots, and lots of food.  Enjoy!

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