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Suggestions -- nesting plants and combinations?

Posted by doctorsteve CT (My Page) on
Sat, May 19, 07 at 20:49

I am planning to start putting in plants to attract hummingbirds this week.

There are plenty of sources of information out there on what plants to use, but I have a couple of questions.

1) What sorts of plants should I consider putting in for nesting? The area in question has some mature deciduous trees (elms and maple), rose of Sharon and lilac already, and I will probably put in red twig dogwood, smoke bush and Nishiki willow in the vicinity. But there are probably also preferred nesting plants that I don't know about...?

2) Most of the plants I have been looking at thus far are late bloomers. Do people have favorite combinations of flowers (including vines) that look good together and provide nectar throughout the summer?

3) I've been reading that it is better to plant groups of a flower than to have a few of many varieties. Should flowers of the same species be clumped together, or is it just as good to mix a number of each species throughout a garden area?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Suggestions -- nesting plants and combinations?

Hummers will nest on branches are are very thin where two or three smaller auxilliary branches meet and form a "Y". Hope that makes sense.

The best way to get season long color especially for those of us up north is to use plants like Salvia coccineas. They are annuals for those of us in the northeast but once they start blooming, they will bloom all season until frost. A coral honeysuckle vine is perennial but will start to bloom by the end of May or first of june depending on how soon the weather warms up and bloom all summer until frost. Garetenmeister fuschia is a tender plant usually available in garden centers this time of year. It can be grown in hanging baskets or large containers and will bloom all season once they start. They do well in morning sun and afternoon shade or filtered sun and lots of water. Cuphea ignea 'David Verity' is another tender plant that will bloom all season and does well in hanging baskets, full sun and lots of water.


RE: Suggestions -- nesting plants and combinations?

Thanks, Penny, that's helpful. Coral honeysuckle has already been shaping up on the list for the trelliswork, along with scarlet runner (of which I have fond memories from childhood). I had not thought of the fuscia, or other hanging things, but thanks for the idea -- easy to put a hook on the eaves of the shed and hang baskets. (Maybe some of those supertunias I just bought too.)

Anyone ... do hummers have preferred nesting bushes? Or will anything with thin branches and good cover do? (Do they need a particular height in order to grace a bush with a nest?)

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