Weather is warmer, flowers are blooming and hummingbirds are in Michigan! The most common hummingbirds in Michigan are the Ruby-Throated and Rufous Hummingbird. Today we will be talking about how to attract these gorgeous birds to your garden.
Know when hummingbirds arrive in your area and have feeders ready for them. They arrive in Michigan in May but you can hang your feeders as early as mid-April. Hummingbirds leave Michigan in late August/early September. Leave your feeders out for two weeks after the last site of hummingbirds.
Gardening for Hummingbirds
Hummingbirds have no sense of smell, but they have great color vision. They are drawn towards the colors red, orange and pink since it suggests a good nectar source. Keep this in mind when purchasing flowers for your garden.
When planting, know that hummingbirds love tubular flowers. This is because they hold the most nectar. Some examples are bee balm, coral bells, lobelia, agastache and penstemon.
If you’re looking for an annual, try a hanging basket of flowers that hummingbirds can’t resist! Some good annuals for hummingbirds are impatiens, petunias, geraniums and begonias.
Hummingbird Feeders are a great way to attract hummingbirds to your yard. There are many different colors and styles of feeders. Hummingbirds are territorial and don’t like to share their nectar source. Have more than one feeder around your garden to attract more hummingbirds.
Filling a Feeder
Farmer John’s carries hummingbird nectar concentrate that your birds will love! Hummingbird nectar concentrate needs to mix with water and you’re good to go. Read the instructions on your product for the correct ratio. Concentrate can come as a liquid or powder-like substance. Fill your feeder about one-third of the way full at the start and end of the season. During the peak season fill your feeder about halfway. Never fill your feeder to capacity because of how much you’ll clean it out. You’ll need to change your nectar often, at least twice a week. Old nectar left in the sun is unappetizing to hummingbirds. They want fresh nectar a couple days a week. If you notice any brown spots on your feeder, it could be a sign of mold which means time to scrub them out.
A good at home mix is 1 cup of white granulated sugar mixed with 4 cups of water. Boil it and let it cool. Steer clear of any colored dyes or additives other than white granulated sugar.
Your feeder will do best surrounded by flowers in your garden. Try to keep it out of full direct sun. The hot summer sun won’t be good for your nectar. Hummingbirds like to perch, so consider buying a hummingbird swing to place next to your feeder.
For additional information check out our recent video: