Pollinator plants and hummingbird attractors

Tue. May. 16, 2017

Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show:  Pollinator plants and hummingbird attractors

Whatever all the reasons are for the bee decline or colony collapse, we can still plant for pollinators.  That includes butterflies and hummingbirds as well as bees!

butterfly and hummingbird

Planting native species is a good thing and there are plenty of nurseries that offer good native stock.   Check out my Favorite Links tab.  I just planted Prairie Smoke last year.  It’s just a baby…

Prairie Smoke

Prairie Smoke

What it will look like…

prairie smoke 2

Echinacea purpurea is a great attractor.

Echinacea - native purple coneflower

Echinacea – native purple coneflower

Another wonderful native is Aquilegia Canadensis aka Columbine.  The one pictured below is our native American Columbine.  It will grow nearly anywhere!

Aquilegia canadensis

I also enjoy  new cultivars.  The one thing we have to understand is that there is always a trade-off of some sort.  While you can have a spectacular rose, you may lose some of it’s fragrance.  Or perhaps you get a disease resistant tomato that lacks that full flavor you love.

Echinacea - Salsa Red

Echinacea – Salsa Red

Salvia is another standout for pollinators.  It’s a standup plant that grows to 2 feet tall and again that wide.  ‘Lyrical Blues’ is one I planted 2 years ago and really love it.

Salvia - Lyrical Blues

Salvia – Lyrical Blues

Hummingbirds love the color red but they’ll be attracted to most tubular shaped flowers.  They also like petunias and fuchsias.  Oh, and for a perennial – try honeysuckle vine!

Lonicera 2016 – honeysuckle vine ‘Dropmore Scarlet’

List of Plants for Pollinators from the University of Minnesota Extension

Grasses are places for pollinators to take refuge, coneflower, monarda, salvia, cannas are growing in the background

Coneflowers, heliopsis, prairie dropseed, daylilies