Apr 29, 2014 | Featured Web Article

Gardening for Hummingbirds

Tubular flowers like those found on orange jewelweed (Impatiens capensis) are irresistable to ruby-throated hummingbirds.
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If you only have a little room in your garden, or want to simplify things and plant a few flowers that really appeal to hummingbirds, you can't go wrong with these:

  • Impatiens have lots of nectar in the little spurs out behind the petals. Stick to the single-flowered varieties; the double "rose-flowered" impatiens are pretty, but hummingbirds can’t get past all the petals to the nectar reservoir. Wild impatiens, or jewelweed (Impatiens capensis and I. Pallid) are irresistible to hummingbirds, and have the added advantage of blooming late in summer when migrants pour through.
  • Bee balm (Monarda spp.) is a highly prized resource with its tangy nectar. It's best planted in shades of red or purple (M. fistulosa); the pink and white varieties don't seem to be a favorite food of hummingbirds.

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