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Attracting Butterflies & Hummingbirds

Butterflies LOVE Blanketflower


  • Fly up to 12 miles per hour
  • Range in size from an 1/8 in. to almost 12 in.
  • Cannot fly if their body temperature is less than 86 degrees
  • Include 24,000 species


Some of the plants that attract butterflies....
...if you plant them, they will come.
Yarrow (N) Daylily Pearly Everlasting (N) Aster
Coneflower (N) Russian Sage Monkshood Baptisia
Scabiosa Gayfeather (N) Pussytoes (N) Agastache
Catmint Mexican Hat (N) Black-eyed Susan (N) Lupine (N)
Gaillardia (N) Lavender Summer Phlox Bee Balm (N)
Shrubs: Caryopteris Rabbitbrush (N) Lilac

Moths are also a beneficial pollinator, here on Caryopteris

Rabbitbrush is a butterfly favorite

Lilac blooms are irresistible to a butterfly









For more information about attracting Butterflies to you garden, visit the Xerces Society.

Also, visit Gardens with Wings and enter your zip code to identify local Butterfly species and a list of their favorite host and nectar plants.



Hummingbirds are absolutely amazing! Noted for their irridescent coloring, zippy flight, ability to fly backwards, and hover while feeding, these dimunitive birds also migrate thousands of miles annually. Hummingbirds have such a high metabolic rate that they daily consume their body weight in food.

We can deliberately invite these delightful visitors into our yards by planting their preferred flowers - starting with the color red, to which they are magnetically attracted. By planting flowers whose nectar hummingbirds seek, we not only feed hungry birds, but also help pollinate plants - while those long slender bills are seeking nectar down a tubular flower, the hummingbirds are inadvertently picking up pollen that they will then transfer to the next flower.

Some of the plants that attract hummingbirds...
(select red varieties whenever possible)
Perennials and Biennials
Agastache Coralbells (N) Catmint Gayfeather (N)
Columbine (N) Hollyhock Salvia Lavender
Bee Balm (N) Iris Day Lily Delphinium
Campanula (N) Lupine (N) Penstemon (N) Scarlet Gilia (N)
Zinnia Morning Glory Nicotiana Nasturtium
Phlox Snapdragon Petunia Red Salvia
Flowering Shrubs and Vines
Lilac Currant (N) Snowberry (N) Weigela
Caragana Honeysuckle Spirea


Recipe for hummingbird feeders:

Boiled solution of one part sugar to four parts water. Do not use red dye, and do not substitute honey for sugar, as it may produce a fungal disease fatal to hummingbirds.


Insects in the Garden

Many insects are not the pests we imagine them to be. In fact, they are often beneficial. Bees are necessary for pollination and, by eating nectar, produce scrumptious honey. Others, like ladybugs and praying mantises, eat pest insects and keep their population under control. The songbirds and hummingbirds you lure to your garden also need insects for survival.

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