Return to the Hummingbird Garden Forum | Post a Follow-Up

Nectar concentration and nectar production

Posted by jay733 9 (My Page) on
Sat, Jun 5, 10 at 12:29

Does anyone know if there's a chart or something that says the nectar concentration and nectar production of each plant? Does it depend on color or size of the flower's tubes or?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Nectar concentration and nectar production

Maybe this will help some. Be sure to look at Lady in Red salvia...

Here's some data from the Lousiana Ornithological Society Newsletter, March 2003, written by Dennis Demcheck. The 3rd number is the average percentage. The higher percentage may be preferred by birds but the number of total visits to a feeder may be higher with the lower percentage.
Sugar concentrations for selected plants, May 2001-November 2002
Plant Minimum % sugar Maximum. % sugar Average % sugar Number of Samples
Forsythia Sage: Salvia madrensis 28.2 33.6 *31.4 16
Anise Salvia: Salvia guaranitica 20.0 33.5 29.0 23
Remsens Sage: Salvia guaranitica hybrid 22.8 35.8 *29.1 24
Orange Mountain Sage: Salvia regla 26.6 >35 *32.0 11
Mexican Bush Sage: Salvia leucantha 27.2 >32 *31.2 10
Mexican Bush Sage, "Waverly" Salvia leucantha 26.6 29.0 27.7 4
Belize Sage: Salvia miniata 21.8 >32 *27.1 7
Lady in Red Salvia: Salvia coccinea 30.4 38.7 33.2 3
Red Hot Sally Salvia: Salvia splendens 16.5 18.9 17.6 4
Van Houttii Salvia: Salvia splendens 18.6 28.6 22.3 16
Winter-blooming Shrimp plant: Justicia sp. 23.0 >32 *27.3 9
Summer-blooming Shrimp plant: Justicia brandegeana 23.5 >35 *29.7 11
Trumpet vine: Campsis radicans 27.8 34.3 *31.2 10
Giant Turks Cap: Malvaviscus pendulaflora 17.0 24.6 20.5 14
Sultans Turban: Malvaviscus drummondii 16.0 >32 *22.2 7
Chinese Lantern, Orange variety: Abutilon pictum 14.9 26.0 21.7 23
Chinese Lantern, Pink variety: Abutilon pictum 19.5 40.1 *29.4 6
Cigar Plant: Cuphea ignea "David Verity" 24.6 28.0 26.8 6
Mexican Cigar: Cuphea micropetala 27.1 29.6 28.1 6
Yellow Justicia: Justicia aurea 22.3 25.8 24.5 3
Firespike: Odontonema stricta 15.6 21.0 19.2 10
Coral honeysuckle: Lonicera sempervirens 18.5 24.0 20.6 13
Firecracker vine: Manettia cordifolia 13.1 29.4 21.7 8
Firebush: Hamelia patens 20.2 22.4 21.3 4
Lions ear: Leonotus leonurus 15.3 19.2 16.9 3
Crybaby tree: Erythrina bidwillii 18.2 22.5 20.2 3

Note: * indicates that Greater Than (>) values were used in computing the average.
> 32% was averaged as 32%; >35% was averaged as 35%

RE: Nectar concentration and nectar production


I wonder what the percentage is for the sugar water that we all make.

One would think that if we are mixing 4 parts water to one part sugar that it would between 20% and 25%, but as we all know, if you add 1 cup of sugar to 4 cups of water you do not get 5 cups of solution, it is more like 4 1/8. To make is simpler... would mixing 1 cup of dry sugar to 1 cup or water(liquid) give a 50% solution? Just what are we giving our hummers with the 1 to 4 and the 1 to 3 mixes?


RE: Nectar concentration and nectar production

The 1/4 ratio we use for nectar comes out as a little under 25% about 22 or so, then the 1/3 comes closer to 25%, but not really sure about that. If anyone can pin point it for us that'd be great. I was wondering though, are these all the plants he has? Does he have more plants on a website or something? For instance would like to know concentration of foxgloves, cuphea bat face, and pentas, also don't have this plant but wondering what the concentration of Bee Palm is, heard it was 50 percent concentration.

RE: Nectar concentration and nectar production

Those percentages don't really make sense. When you go to 1 to 3 you are using 25% less water than 1 to 4, so I don't see how the concentration would only go up 3%, especially if we are treating the dry and wet uints as equal for the 1 to 4. Of course I could be wrong as I am just going by common sense rather than numbers of actual sugar water.

RE: Nectar concentration and nectar production

For your Sunday afternoon reading pleasure...

Here is a link that might be useful: Info

RE: Nectar concentration and nectar production

Oh my... now I have a headache. :c)

Thanks for the link ctnchpr! What ratio do you use in your feeders by the way?


RE: Nectar concentration and nectar production

Ken, I'm not very precise with the measurements - somewhere between 1:3 and 1:4.

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Hummingbird Garden Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here