Anytime is the perfect time to make your yard a more inviting home for your favorite birds. No matter how big or small your yard is you can still attract birds with a little bit of planning. A successful backyard habitat provides a year-long combination of food, shelter and water for your feathered friends. If you are interested in adding shelter or providing a brooding habitat in your backyard consider some of these plants.
Planting Margarita BOP Penstemon in the spring is the perfect plant for attracting birds and Butterflies. It provides nectar for Hummingbirds and Butterflies, seeds for songbirds, and cover from predators with its semi-evergreen foliage! Beautiful sky blue blooms acquire pink tones as they age, and they keep coming from early summer to fall. Very long-lived (unlike some Penstemons), so you and the birds will enjoy it for many years. Needs no water in summer once established, and deer don't like it! (BOP is short for Back of Porch, which is where the breeder found it growing.)
Buffalo Grass is another plant that provides an excellent source of cover and brooding habitat, especially for ground nesting birds. Birds are able to move about on the ground, catching and feeding on insects.
Ruby Slippers Oakleaf Hydrangea is another great choice - this is one of the easiest of all Hydrangeas to grow, impervious to heat and drought, thriving in sun or shade, and even poor soil, as long as it is well drained. Songbirds welcome the seeds in fall and winter, and the dense habit provides good coverage for birds like Cardinals that like low-growing, thick plants.
In summertime, flowers and shrubs are especially appealing to nesting birds as well as insect and nectar eaters. Consider these perennial plants as a way to attract birds and beautify your landscape:
- Red Pixie Lilac
- Butterfly Bush
You can also add natural food sources with the following Plants:
If you are looking to attract hummingbirds to your yard, you can't go wrong with Orange Honeysuckle. This flowering vine provides great cover and produces blooms from June to frost. It'll attract countless hummingbirds and butterflies love its sweet nectar, too. The berries that Honeysuckle produces also provide a source of food during the fall and early winter.
For a food source that lasts through the winter season consider Prairie Fire Crabapple. This rugged, disease-resistant tree will serve up a bounty of glossy dark red, 1/2-inch fruits that are sure to bring in flocks of songbirds.
Providing Water an Essential part of a Bird Habitat:
A supply of fresh water is an integral part of creating your backyard habitat. The birds that visit your yard will use the water for bathing and drinking. Unless your yard is blessed with a natural source of water, like a creek or pond, the easiest way to add water to your habitat is with a birdbath.
Habitats that provide the basic needs of food, shelter and water are sure to bring more birds to your yard. And don't forget, spring is the perfect time to start planning and planting your own backyard habitat.