Three out of every four flowering plants rely on pollinators, such as the graceful hummingbird.
But sadly, pollinators are on the decline worldwide.
Since Pollinator Week is June 17-23, there’s no better time to reward these tiny, hard working friends for all they do than by turning your yard or garden into a welcoming haven.
Here are a few tips to attract these helpful feathered friends to your garden today from Natural Wildlife Federation Naturalist, Media Spokesperson and author David Mizejewski:
1. Keep your feeder fresh.
Offer sugar water in a hummingbird feeder by mixing one part sugar to four parts boiling water. Change the water frequently since the “nectar” can spoil quickly, sending a hummer away no matter how hungry it is. Replace the solution every five to seven days during the cooler months, and as often as every two days in the summer.
2. Make sure your flowers are a favorite.
Plant annuals and perennials with different blooming periods to have a steady supply of flowers from early spring until fall to attract hummingbirds and keep them there. Red and tubular flowers are a favorite, but also consider native honeysuckles, most varieties of sages or salvia, and many types of columbine.
3. Leaving some insects can be beneficial.
While many people think hummingbirds feed only on nectar, the birds feed their young a diet made up almost entirely of small insects. In addition, adult birds need regular doses of protein from mosquitoes, spiders, thrips, gnats and other arthropods.
4. Don’t forget water.
If you have a birdbath, place a couple of flat rocks in it to give the tiny birds a chance to bathe. Running water seems to be a magnet to hummers—they will even fly through the spray of a sprinkler.
Whether you have an apartment balcony or a 20-acre farm, you can create a garden that attracts beautiful wildlife and helps restore habitat in commercial and residential areas. By providing food, water, cover and a place for wildlife to raise their young you not only help wildlife, but you also qualify to become an official Certified Wildlife Habitat®.