Botanist's Lens: Feeding the Busy Winged Wonders
Pollinator gardens are an oasis to the winged wonders, who often share a mutualistic relationship with the plants they rely on for their nutrition. As vital as bees are to a habitat, birds, ants, moths and butterflies are also extremely crucial for a wholesome pollinator habitat.
I am sharing with you today three pollinator garden ideas:
the first is a single pot that can feed an army of hummingbirds!(https://www.fs.fed.us/…/…/animals/AttractingHummingbirds.pdf)
next is a compact scarlet design that can be done next to a sun-part sun window
the last is if you have all the sun & space
Option 1: Single Pot of Fuschia
Let’s start with the simplest! Did you know that hummingbirds use their vision for finding their food instead of sense of smell like the bees?
Fuschia or Dancing Dolls by Peter Clarke - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=3672923
Fuchsia - ‘Dancing Dolls’ as they are called - is a vibrant and abundantly flowering plant that attracts hummingbirds. Here are some links on Fuchsias:
Option 2: Compact Design
The second design is for a compact sun-light/shade area and can be placed next to a window/side of a building.
Hummingbirds love the trumpet shaped flowers of Coral Honeysuckle. It is an excellent climber, but it needs more than a garden trellis to climb on, a side of building will give it a good base (See https://extension.umd.edu/learn/coral-honeysuckle).
Add Red salvias, bright Crocosmias (https://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/…/PlantFinderDetail…), and Azaleas, and it will be an oasis for both birds and butterflies.
Azaleas at London Town
Place some logs and a bird bath, and it will be a view to behold when the winged wonders come for a feed and a dip!
Option 3: Large Space with Full Sun
The third design I am sharing is elaborate for a space where you get full sun, don't mind playing with color, and height isn't an issue.
Liliacs (for early spring), Hibiscus 'Moscheutos', Clethra, and Solidago 'Golden Rod' can fill up the tall back drop.
Hibiscus at London Town
The middle layer can be filled with Amsonias, Salvias, and Shasta Daisy. (Joe Pye Weeds are also excellent, but they need a lot of room).
Swallowtail Butterfly on Joe Pye Weed at London Town with pink Hibiscus in background
A dense border of Sedums/Rudbeckias with boulders, small rocks, or logs next to it will create a beautiful wholesome habitat for the winged wonders.
You could also add tulip/daffodils in the front rows for some color in spring, since the rest of the design is for mid-summer blooms.
Deep Purple Tulips at London Town
If you have the room, hope you enjoy adding some of these landscape designs to your garden/patio. Pollinators get attracted to the slightest of smell and smallest of flowers, but can leave a large impact on a habitat. Let's make room for the winged wonders!
Tree Peony 'Hana Kasoi' and deep purple Tulip