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Posted by Tammy Sons on Mar 01, 2022
A lush green landscape and vibrant perennial gardens give homeowners sought-after leisure beauty. But would the addition of hummingbirds hovering in front of blooms and butterflies spreading the wings make your experience otherworldly?
If the answer is a definite “Yes,” making this dreamscape a reality could be within your reach. By integrating select flowering perennials into gardens and other areas of your property, the scents and nectar will act as a magnet and attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
Hummingbirds require a minimum of 3 grams of nectar daily to maintain their strength. That amount of nectar generally equals the fast-winged bird’s total body weight. Contrary to popular belief, hummingbirds need substantial rest because their wing rate can exceed 50 movements per second. Those are reasons hummingbirds don’t waste time with plants that produce low nectar levels or get routinely pillaged by bees. They tend to gravitate to the following attributes.
Hummingbirds practice pragmatism when entering a flower-rich landscape. They look for colors and shapes likely to provide the nutrition they require. They also tend to feed on tiny insects attracted to the nectar as well.
Although upwards of 300 species of hummingbirds populate the planet, only about two dozen migrate from Mexico and Central America through the U.S. and Canada during the warm weather. The Allen’s (Selasphorus Sasin), Rufous (Selasphorus Rufus), and Anna’s (Calypte Anna) hummingbirds rank among the most colorful, possessing bright red, green, and pink feathers.
What may be surprising to gardening enthusiasts but many of the prized perennials can draw hummingbirds and butterflies. What tends to be missing from properties are enough long-blooming perennials to make that occur. The following options lead the list of flowering perennials likely to invite these lovely creatures.
North American gardeners enjoy access to a wide range of flowering plants that can harm hummingbirds. Plants tailored to their preferences and those that bloom for long periods rank among the best choices. Naturally, the way you organize these flowering plants will also impact hummingbird traffic.
We all know about the quickness and agility of hummingbirds. Those attributes mean that home gardeners do not necessarily have to create exclusive hummingbird gardens. Flowering plants such as Honeysuckle, Wisteria, and Virginia Bluebells, among others, can be deployed as creepers to cover trellises, sides of decks, fences, and other hardscape elements. These spreaders will attract hummingbirds and butterflies in droves.
Designated gardening beds infused with flowering perennials tend to attract these amazing creatures. But one or two preferred plants won’t necessarily win them over. It’s crucial to group flowering plants together that bloom at the same time each year. Long-blooming plants can serve as a backdrop for those that flower for portions of the growing season. The key to a robust hummingbird landscape calls for the sweet smell of nectar-rich flowering perennials.