There’s nothing like a fresh garden bursting with flowers of different colors and textures, with birds and butterflies bouncing from plant to plant.
Perhaps the most treasured bird of all is the brightly colored, quick-moving and tiny hummingbird, of which the smallest (the bee hummingbird, which you’ll have to travel to Cuba to see) is two inches long and weighs less than an ounce.
In the U.S., you’re more likely to see the ruby-throated hummingbird, Anna’s hummingbird or one of these other types found in North America.
Marked by jewel-toned feathers and known for the humming sound made by their flapping wings, hummingbirds are a welcome addition to any garden. But if you want these special birds to visit your yard, you have to lure them with the plants they like best.
Fortunately, there are at least 40 great plants known for attracting these gorgeous creatures to your outdoor dwelling.
Here are eight of our favorite ones to try.
1. Bee Balm
Also known as bergamot, horsemint or monada, bee balm is marked by its height—as much as 3 or 4 feet—and vibrant shades of red, orange, pink and purple. This flower thrives in a sunny environment.
2. Scarlet Sage
Just like its name, this wise red beauty is the perfect flower to plant into a hanging basket (or a field) to attract hummingbirds to your dwelling.
3. Trumpet Flower
This long, tubular and ambitious flower thrives in full sun or even partial shade. Just beware of its “invasive” properties: It can overpower an area and climb many different surfaces.
One of the most popular and inexpensive garden flowers, petunias grow anywhere—from small baskets to full gardens—in vibrant shades of purple, pink, white and countless variations. Plus, they’re full of delicious nectar that hummingbirds are sure to love.
The perennial summer phlox wildflowers are colorful and star-shaped and especially enticing to hummingbirds. Plus, they come in lots of varieties so they’ll work in nearly every garden color scheme. Bonus: They’re easy to plant and low-maintenance.
6. Cardinal Flower
Many gardeners consider the cardinal flower, or Lobelia, the ideal choice for attracting hummingbirds. Its long stalks reach heights of 48 inches, and the delicate, red blooms make this flower an attractive addition to any landscape.
Also known as “hummingbird mint,” this aromatic floral plant is delicate and enticing and offers one of the best sources of natural nectar. It is a favorite of the Hummingbird Society.
Cherished for its ability to grow easily and blossom into gorgeous, bell-like bursts, this delicate flower is a favorite of both gardeners and hummingbirds. It’s easy to grow and maintain, tolerating a range of soils and geographic climates.
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