Attracting Hummingbirds: Creating a Haven in Your Yard
Though they may be small, these birds are definitely mighty. Pollination and natural pest control are two of the big reasons to welcome hummingbirds onto your property. There are countless theories from gardeners all across North America on how to invite these little birds into their gardens. However, there are a few things to keep at the top of your list if you are hoping to attract hummingbirds to your garden.
Natural Pest Control
If you’ve ever seen one of these creatures darting around in your garden, you might have tried to snap a picture of it. If so, you probably wound up with a less than satisfactory image. Likely, the wings in the picture were blurry. This is due to the fact that hummingbirds can beat their wings up to 80 times per second! The amount they beat their wings means they burn through a lot of food and, as a result, have an extremely high metabolism. They can eat more than their body weight in nectar every single day. Not only do hummingbirds enjoy the nectar from your plants, but they also love insects like mosquitoes, gnats, and aphids. If you are successful in attracting hummingbirds to your property, you can also reap the benefits of these little pest killers.
Attracting hummingbirds to your garden will also increase pollination. As these little birds flit from bloom to bloom, drinking nectar, their heads rub against the inside of the flowers. The hummingbirds then carries that pollen from one flower to the next. This act of pollination fertilizes the plants in your garden and allows them to grow seeds and reproduce.
Essentials for Attracting Hummingbirds
When encouraging any beneficial animal or insect, it is important to not only provide them with a food source, but also with other necessities. Things like hiding places, nesting areas, and water sources are just as important as food to your tiny friends. Hummingbirds appreciate shrubs and trees near feeding areas. This way, they are able to hide quickly and build nests close to food sources.
If you are serious about attracting hummingbirds, it is also essential to provide useful materials for building nests. Pussy Willows are some of the best plants when it comes time for the little birds to build homes. They are able to use the fuzzy parts of the plant as a lining for their nests. The downy wool from Cinnamon Ferns can also be used for the same purpose.
In order to encourage hummingbirds to stay and make homes in your property, you must also ensure they have constant access to food. Make sure you pay close attention to the blooming seasons of your flowers. Attracting hummingbirds effectively requires providing consistent food sources. You need to make sure that you have a sufficient amount of flowers blooming at any given time during a season. This also means garden maintenance is extremely important. Make sure you check out this blog for some great tips and tricks.
Creating Hummingbird Havens
While people may find that placing a store-bought feeder outside their kitchen window is enough, there are actually more details to consider when attracting hummingbirds. It is very important to also eliminate the use of pesticides in your yard. Pesticides are known to harm hummingbirds and negatively impact the environment they live in. Read more about that here. Providing a sustainable habitat that includes food, shelter, and water is essential. If you are able to maintain that habitat, the hummingbirds will feast on those unwanted insects and pollinate your plants. Your garden will be much healthier as a result!