The joyful part of gardening is observing winged friends visit your yard and flit about the shrubs, flowers, feeders and water features. As much as you love plants, these little creatures are an extra treat that will make all the hard work that you put in bringing up your garden much more worthwhile.
An attractive garden with lots of flourishing shrubs, annuals, perennials and herbs is not only a feast for the eyes, but is a veritable habitat for the birds and the pollinators.
Of course, the most colorful of those pollinators is the butterfly, and the most dainty and amazing to watch of the birds is the amiable hummingbird. While they may get all the attention, the fact is that anything we do to attract these specific animals will also bring in the other birds and insects, so it is a win-win situation for everyone.
Attracting butterflies and hummingbirds to your garden is as simple as planting the flowers they like. Plant enough of their favorites so that they can find them easily and return often. However, hummingbirds and butterflies need more than just nectar.
How to attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
Plant nectar and pollen-rich flowers.
The first steps towards attracting these loveable creatures is planting a pollinator-friendly garden. Select plants that are flowery and pollen-rich like wildflowers and old fashion variety of flowers. A succession of blossoming annuals and perennial shrubs is best so that nectar and pollen will be available throughout the season. Bright colors will catch their eyes fast in flight, so consider planting your butterfly plants in swaths larger enough for them to spot.
Examples of suitable flowers and shrubs to plant in your garden include; red-hot poker, firecracker penstemon, lace mantle, bling bling, fuchsia among many others. These unique flowers are a magnet for butterflies and hummingbirds.
Many pesticides including organic ones are toxic to butterflies and any other beneficial organisms in the garden. Always avoid using powerful poisons to protect your garden from insects and diseases.
In the short term, they may provide a quick knock-down to the attackers, but they also kill beneficial organisms such as bees, butterflies, and birds including hummingbirds. In the long term, you expose yourself, family, pets, and wildlife to toxic chemicals, and risk disrupting the natural ecosystem that you and your garden inhabit.
An organic approach is both safe and more efficient. By applying the simple principles of ecological plant protection, you will be able to protect your garden from intruders by working with nature to control pests and diseases.
If you may be forced to apply pesticides, apply them carefully and selectively. Avoid using pesticides on open blossoms or when butterflies and other pollinators are present.
Provide food and water.
At any given circumstances, a garden full of pollen plants will always provide food for the pollinators including butterflies and hummingbirds. However, adding unique feeders and drinkers will help attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
Install a water garden, a birdbath or a catchy basin for rain. Butterflies are attracted to muddy puddles where they will flock to for salts and nutrients as well as water.
Like any other living organisms, butterflies and hummingbirds need shelter to hide from predators, get out of the element and rear their young ones. Cut and place a pile of grass cuttings or log decompose in a sunny place on the ground or allow a dead tree to stand and create nooks for butterflies and bees.
You can also raise artificial nesting boxes to help attract pollinators including hummingbirds. You can also drill proper-sized holes which will attract butterflies into your garden.
Keeping butterflies and hummingbirds in your backyard is a fantastic experience that brings joy anytime you leave your house to have a fresh breeze outside. It’s easy to maintain and does don’t require any specialized equipment and knowledge. Maybe it’s time you think about setting up your garden.