Gardening for Butterflies, Birds and Bees forum: I saw my FIRST hummingbird ever at my home

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Name: Linda
SE Houston, Tx. (Hobby) (Zone 9a)
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Gymgirl
Sep 27, 2011 10:12 AM CST
I saw my FIRST hummingbird ever at my home this past Saturday! I could hardly believe it! Hurray! Hurray! Hurray! Hurray!

Now, I wanna know how to attract more, and keep the one's I have happy.
Name: Linda
Medina Co., TX (Zone 8a)
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LindaTX8
Sep 27, 2011 11:45 AM CST
Try these sites:
http://www.hummingbirdworld.com/h/gardens.htm
http://www.hummingbirds.net/attract.html
A few plants I especially like for hummingbirds are Flame Acanthus, Turk's Cap, Carolina Jessamine, Firebush, salvias, penstemons and Red Yucca.
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Name: Sandy Coffman
Jacksonville, Florida
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wren
Sep 30, 2011 6:12 PM CST
Blue and Black Salvia is a favorite around here, also red pentas and red impatiens
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
Oct 3, 2011 7:04 AM CST
I found these lists of Hummingbird attracting plants for the Houston area:

http://www.houstonaudubon.org/default.aspx?act=newsletter.as...

http://www.chron.com/life/gardening/article/Plants-for-hummi...

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Name: tarev
San Joaquin County, CA (Zone 9b)
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tarev
Oct 3, 2011 7:39 PM CST
The hummies that hang around our garden just go for straight to the feeder, as long as there is a red color on it. Like a bull to a red cape..heheh. But I do notice they love playing around my spider plants and with its tiny flowers.
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
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kqcrna
Oct 6, 2011 6:50 AM CST
Agastaches and all salvias top the list for me. As for salvia, both annual and perennial ones, makes no difference to them. Those that are annual reseed very well.

Gymgirl, also hang feeders. My favorite are the humzinger feeders, very easy to clean.
http://www.hummzinger.com/

Karen
Name: Trish
Jacksonville, TX (Zone 8a)
I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Roses Herbs Vegetable Grower
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Trish
Oct 6, 2011 7:15 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I can only ditto everyone else. We have hummers (around 20, at least), and they stay here most of the year. I would think that you'll be able to keep them for even longer. We have two of our feeders at the dining room windows, as well as many attracting plants there. We love watching the humming bird show!

Cardinal climber is also a good one, although it takes forever and a month to get around to blooming for me. Once it does, the hummers like it a lot.
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Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
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kqcrna
Oct 6, 2011 8:02 AM CST
Same here, Trish. The hummers seemed to like the cardinal climber when it finally bloomed. Not many flowers and not for very long. I won't grow it again.

Karen
Name: Trish
Jacksonville, TX (Zone 8a)
I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Roses Herbs Vegetable Grower
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Trish
Oct 6, 2011 8:38 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

Mine started blooming maybe a month ago (but more like 3 weeks, I think). There are lots of blooms, and they are holding on, so I suspect that they will bloom until frost. I'm still undecided about growing it again next year....It didn't melt to the drought, so that gives it quite a few bonus points!
NGA COO, Wife, Mom, and caretaker of 90 acres and all that dwell there.
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cut Flowers Winter Sowing Charter ATP Member Seed Starter
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kqcrna
Oct 6, 2011 9:04 AM CST
Yes, that says a lot.

My husband yanked ours on Sunday. This was about maximum bloom I got from it, Sept 1. By late September, blooming had stopped.

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Karen
Name: Toni
Denver Metro (Zone 5a)
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.
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Skiekitty
Oct 6, 2011 9:59 AM CST
Agastaches (a.k.a. Hyssops) & Salvias are definite hummer magnets. I only usually have 3.. 2 girls & 1 boy of the Broadtail variety, but that's what I grow to attract them. Some varieties of hyssops smell like root beer, extremely drought tolerant, VERY xeric, and are dummy proof! Gotta love 'em! Agastache cana is one of my favorites.. it's actually called Hummingbird Mint! http://www.finegardening.com/design/articles/hysspos-agastac... Grows huge (I'll take pictures of mine tonight if I don't get home too late), easy to care for, awesome plant!
Roses are one of my passions! Just opened, my Etsy shop (to fund my rose hobby)! http://www.etsy.com/shop/TweetsnTreats
Name: Linda
SE Houston, Tx. (Hobby) (Zone 9a)
"Godspeed, & Good Harvest!"
Region: Texas Vegetable Grower Seed Starter Garden Ideas: Master Level Canning and food preservation Gardens in Buckets
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Gymgirl
Oct 6, 2011 10:09 AM CST
Thank you ALL for the feedback. this is only the 3rd hummingbird I've ever seen in my life, so you can imagine I was so thrilled with the possibility of having them in my yard!

The very first time I encountered a hummingbird was on the way out to work one morning. I was walking down the sidewalk to my car, and something was "buzzing" ahead right in front of me, about 2 feet from my face. I thought it was a bee or something, and was about to shoo it away, until I noticed the controlled movement and the fact that it was just sort of "hovering" there. I stopped short and really looked, and it was hummingbird! A teeny, tiny little BIRD, probably no longer than half of my little finger! With wings going a gazillion miles a minute!

Wow!!!! God is truly amazing! Rolling my eyes.
Name: Trish
Jacksonville, TX (Zone 8a)
I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Roses Herbs Vegetable Grower
Composter Canning and food preservation Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Organic Gardener Forum moderator Hummingbirder
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Trish
Oct 6, 2011 10:36 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

Linda- I'm really surprised and excited for you that you've never seen them around! I assumed that they would be fairly plentiful in your area.

I think we have so many because we're on acreage, and they have nests everywhere. Not like in a suburb where they aren't going to be so sure of safely making nests nearby.

Keep planting- you'll have your own little hummer family who visits every year!!
NGA COO, Wife, Mom, and caretaker of 90 acres and all that dwell there.
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
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kqcrna
Oct 6, 2011 10:46 AM CST
Since I'm so far north of Texas--- I think it helps to get a feeder hanging early in spring, and wash daily and add fresh nectar. Once they've arrived in Cinti, they find their feeder fast. There aren't that many plants blooming for them then.

Mine are still here- I saw a couple of females this morning feeding from my salvia. Our weather has turned warm again. Although I live in suburbia I get tons of hummers every summer.

Karen
Name: Susie
Phoenix AZ (Zone 9a)
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Aguane
Oct 6, 2011 10:59 AM CST
Congrats on the visiting hummer, Linda. They are so much fun to watch. I have three sorts of feeders and they seem to like all of them equally. The green glass feeder below is least likely to be taken over by other birds. Remember not to pick up a feeder with yellow flowers. It will draw bees and wasps.

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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
Region: United States of America Morning Glories Region: Florida Houseplants Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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plantladylin
Oct 6, 2011 11:22 AM CST
Putting a nectar feeder in the garden is a great addition along with plants that attract hummers; and speaking of plants, Toni mentioned Agastache and Salvia. There are numerous Agastache and Salvia listed in the ATP database, some with great photo's:

Agastache: http://garden.org/plants/browse/plants/genus/Agastache/?offs...

Salvia: http://garden.org/plants/browse/plants/genus/Salvia/


~ Eat, Sleep .... Play in the dirt ~
Name: Toni
Denver Metro (Zone 5a)
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.
Charter ATP Member Irises Salvias Xeriscape Birds I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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Skiekitty
Oct 6, 2011 11:24 AM CST
Aguane said:Congrats on the visiting hummer, Linda. They are so much fun to watch. I have three sorts of feeders and they seem to like all of them equally. The green glass feeder below is least likely to be taken over by other birds. Remember not to pick up a feeder with yellow flowers. It will draw bees and wasps.


Actually, I've found that with the 3 different feeders I've got, doesn't matter what color the liquid is or what color the flowers are. Wasps & bees will find it regardless. I've got 1 that's a copper feeder w/just red flowers (http://www.homedepot.com/h_d1/N-5yc1v/R-100615669/h_d2/Produ...), one that's just red & clear (http://www.firstnature.net/product_hummingbirdfeeders.html), and a standard Perky pet & I was dismayed to see the muddaubers taking over each time I filled them. Bleh!!
Roses are one of my passions! Just opened, my Etsy shop (to fund my rose hobby)! http://www.etsy.com/shop/TweetsnTreats
Name: Linda
SE Houston, Tx. (Hobby) (Zone 9a)
"Godspeed, & Good Harvest!"
Region: Texas Vegetable Grower Seed Starter Garden Ideas: Master Level Canning and food preservation Gardens in Buckets
Tip Photographer Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Ferns
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Gymgirl
Oct 6, 2011 3:14 PM CST
What kind of "nectar?"
Name: Toni
Denver Metro (Zone 5a)
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot.
Charter ATP Member Irises Salvias Xeriscape Birds I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Procrastinator The WITWIT Badge Region: Colorado Enjoys or suffers cold winters Cat Lover
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Skiekitty
Oct 6, 2011 3:27 PM CST
Linda - Don't bother buying "nectar" from stores.. all it is is sugarwater. I mix 1.5 or so of sugar in a 1 liter waterbottle w/just regular tap water & shake well. It will refrigerate well and not spoil. I add a few drops of food coloring too, but some people prefer not to.
Roses are one of my passions! Just opened, my Etsy shop (to fund my rose hobby)! http://www.etsy.com/shop/TweetsnTreats
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cut Flowers Winter Sowing Charter ATP Member Seed Starter
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kqcrna
Oct 6, 2011 3:53 PM CST
The most common recipe I've seen is
4 parts water
1 part sugar

So I mix 2 cups of water to 1/2 cup of sugar. If I want to hurry I heat the water in the microwave, then sugar dissolves instantly. I store it in the refrigerator in a jar with screw on lid. It will refill my feeder several times.

I do try to wash and refill feeder with fresh nectar every day in hot weather. That nectar gets funky fast.

I've also seen advice not to color the water- food coloring might be detrimental to the birds.

Karen

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