Ahhh, spring! Don’t you just love the bright and airy sounds of busy birds singing up a storm? We do, too. With trills, chirps, and tweets, these feathered ambassadors can inspire a smile and lift most any mood.
In honor of National Garden Month in April, we’re sharing our list of 10 favorite plants to attract birds and other beneficial wildlife, bringing wonder for the eyes, a delight for the ears, and pollinators for the garden.
- Black-Eyed Susan
Count on this easy-grow perennial not only to serve up vibrant pops of orange or gold from summer to fall but also to draw birds, butterflies, and even beneficial insects. Plus, it’s hardy, low maintenance, and a sweet addition to any bouquet.
- Blanket Flower
This full-sun beauty, often an orange-yellow mix, can bloom all summer into fall, needs little water once established, and brings the birds and butterflies a-calling. Heights vary across cultivars — from ground cover to 3 feet, with a 1- to 2-foot spread — but every variety spells “J-O-Y.”
Yes, birds love blueberries too, so plant enough for them and you! The northern highbush blueberry shrub, a North American native, enjoys full sun but can also handle partial shade. Add a couple other kinds of blueberry plants with the same bloom schedule for cross-pollination and bigger yields.
It’s hard to go wrong with a thicket of crocosmia, a sun-loving, late-summer-blooming perennial with tubular red, orange, or yellow flowers that attract hummingbirds and butterflies. It easily multiplies, is drought tolerant, and can rise 2 to 4 feet.
A hummingbird favorite, this flowering plant comes in shrubs and small trees and sports intricately artful blooms. As if the gorgeous petals ranging from pink, blue, or white to orange, red, or violet weren’t enough, the plant produces edible fruit.
With its enchanting scent, prized purple blooms, and uses in everything from soaps, lotions, and remedies to art and food, lavender is legendary. Pollinators such as hummingbirds, butterflies, and bumblebees love it, too.
- Lyreleaf Sage
A ground cover that offers up white to purple-blue flowers, lyreleaf sage gets the attention of hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees — a trifecta of pollinators. It can grow up to 2 feet tall with a spread of 1 to 2 feet.
This ground-cover plant not only produces beautiful red berries that birds savor, but it easily spreads, can take moist or dry soil, offers white or pink flowers, and thrives in the shade. Winning!
- Purple Coneflower
This reliable, full-sun, purple or pink perennial not only blooms long in summertime but also offers up seeds that birds love. The plant reaches up to about 3 feet high and comes back year after year with minimal care.
Birds and trees go together like crackers and cheese, so it’s no wonder that trees in general would earn a spot on our list of faves. They make for great perching and offer habitat for raising chicks, hunting prey, and hiding from predators.
Remember, some selections may not work for every climate or region, so be sure to check with your local agricultural extension agency or other farming and gardening resource for the right plants to bring the sounds of birds and other friendly fauna to your yard.
Got a few favorites of your own for attracting birds and other musical wildlife to the garden? Let us know!
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