Attracting Hummingbirds

Attracting Hummingbirds to Your Yard

Not every yard has Hummingbirds. And not every yard that is well prepared to attract them will do so immediately. But with a little work, you can make your yard an inviting place for these wonderful animals.

About Hummingbirds

Hummingbirds are notorious for their high metabolism and are very territorial. Once they find a place that can provide them with all the nectar they need for their metabolism, they often return to the same places over and over again.

Adult male ruby-throated hummingbird. The primary species that visits Iowa.

But with the right plantings and help from a hummingbird feeder, it’s possible to attract these beloved birds to your yard.

Attracting Hummingbirds

Hummingbirds tend to be attracted to red, yellow, and orange tubular flowering plants, but will also visit other flowers.

Thus, including hostas, daylilies, impatiens, petunias, Cannas, Agastache, Coral Bells, Bee Balm, Salvia, and Nicotiana in your garden improves the appeal to hummingbirds.

Petunias come in a variety of colors that hummingbirds like and provide lots nectar.
Canna “Lilies” are another vibrant flower known to attract hummingbirds.

Another great way to attract hummingbirds is through a hummingbird feeder.

Plain red feeders work great and can be filled with homemade sugar water. No red dye or additives are needed, as the sugar water is not a primary food source for hummingbirds, but instead is a quick boost of energy to continue to feed from flowers and on small insects.

Hummingbirds are curious and will investigate your feeder if it has some bright color.

Because hummingbirds are migratory and territorial, they may not notice your yard the first year you set it up with flowers and feeders they like. With a little luck, they will come. And be sure to keep your feeder out until they migrate south in the fall. Wait two weeks or so after you see your last hummingbird before cleaning it and storing it until spring.

More Info on Humming Birds:

The Hawkeye

Iowa State University Extension

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