Hummingbirds provide a lot of theatre-type enjoyment to us, and since the beautiful Flame Acanthus in the picture below is sitting just outside my office window, I have a constant parade of delicate dancers swooping in and out for a drink.
Hummingbird feeders work to attract them too and can be hung right outside a favorite window for watching – I like the ones that have perches. Many garden centers carry them and this website has some really good ones…
http://www.backyardwildbirds.com/servlet/the-Hummingbird-Feeders/Categories (do not add red food coloring to the sugar water or buy nectar that has it in it-it is very bad for them).
The simple recipe is 1 part sugar + 3 parts boiling water-let it cool – change it out and clean the feeder often to keep it clean and healthy for them.
I usually have a feeder or two but I prefer attracting them with plants. It is- in my opinion- a much better option – just because it eliminates the nectar mixing and washing- so it is much less work (I’m a lazy girl).
Below is a list of plants that have great hummer appeal – these will all still be blooming in the Fall when the hummers really hang around here. Plant these in an area where they can be viewed through a window or a favorite outdoor sitting spot. (Like little tiny helicopters!)
For Sunny spots – Flame Acanthus-red, Cypress Vine-red, Salvia Greggii-red, Cross Vine-orange, Coral Honeysuckle-coral, Glossy Abelia-white, Red Yucca-coral, Agastache-many colors, Verbena Bonariensis-purple.
For Shady Spots plant these- Red Turks Cap-red, Cross Vine-orange (sun or shade), Fall Obedient Plant-purple, Althea-blue, pink, white (sun or shade).
Don’t forget to give yourself some extra time for just sitting and enjoying all of the aspects of your garden.
Love & Luck, Lucy Harrell