Answer: The best way to attract butterflies and hummingbirds is to have a variety of flowers in bloom all season long. Most butterflies feed on flowers (like members of the sunflower or zinnia family) with large exposed sites to easily obtain nectar. They are attracted to gardens with lots of color, especially bright, vibrant colors with striking contrasts. The following plants are the most popular with butterflies and hummers: asters, Shasta daisy, purple coneflower, hollyhocks (larval host plant), nicotiana, petunia, Gaillardia, Pincushion flower, salvia, Milkweed (larval host plant), Butterfly Weed (larval host plant), desert aster, desert zinnia, tithonia or Mexican sunflower, Joe-Pye weeds, ox-eye daisy, gilias, verbena, Bigelow's Aster, Indian paintbrush, desert globe-mallow (larval host plant), Black-eyed Susan, any sunflower family member, coreopsis, liatris, pentas, Jupiter's beard, coral bells, cosmos, French marigolds (Tagetes spp.), yarrow, hyssop, mints, lavender, bee balm, rosemary, catnip, pineapple sage. Hummingbirds are generally attracted to plants that have red tubular flowers such as firebush, coral vine, rock penstemon, and red yucca. They also like Salvia guaranitica, trumpet vine, red or yellow columbines and cardinal climber vine.
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