Pheathers & Phlowers – Hummingbird Plants

If the tomato cage and bell didn’t give you a clue to actual size, this bird would appear to be just a common bird perching on a wire. Not so, the hummingbird in the photo was very annoyed with me. I disturbed its meal of delicious nectar.

Hummingbirds have visited our yard since Spring. I had a nectar feeder, but when it gets hot, and my flowers begin to bloom, I take it down. The feeder is glass, the liquid inside becomes quite hot. Besides being a possible burn problem, the heat contributes to the nectar going bad. I change the contents every 48 hours, but I don’t trust it to stay pure when the temperatures rise.

Firecracker flowers are a perfect shape for a hummingbird’s tongue.

The inner disk florets are where the hummingbird finds the nectar on a zinnia plant. This zinnia is part of Cee’s Midweek Madness Challenge/Macro.

The cardinal vine flower is trumpet-shaped, another perfect feeding blossom for the hummingbird.

Cardinal vines are climbers, they wrap their quickly growing stems around anything within reach. I usually have to cut, rather than pull, them away from their support. The vines have the strength of steel filaments before the growing season is over. The vines against the sky are part of this week’s Skywatch.

Blue Salvia is another flower that draws the hummingbirds to our garden. I know, in a few weeks, they will have their last sip of nectar in my gardens, but I am already thinking of what to plant next year to bring them back again.

13 thoughts on “Pheathers & Phlowers – Hummingbird Plants

    1. I stopped the sugar water feeder. The liquid became too hot. The flowers have prevailed though, and the hummers are spotted several times every day. Sometimes there are even big battles in the yard over the flowers. The small hummers are very feisty.

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  1. For such a little bird, they can have a colossal attitude, especially when they are territorial as to their fellow hummers feasting at “their feeder”. I was using Nectar Defender (from Wild Birds Unlimited) to keep the nectar sweet, but also took down the feeders for the same reason – they were out in the sun and I am sure it was spoiling and the ants started crawling in the ports. Annoying. I go to the Taylor Conservatory and Botanical Gardens – it is a metal domed open-work structure in a big park and a few years ago they planted Cardinal Flowers for the hummingbirds. They got plenty of hummingbirds but one of the docents told me that they planted the Cardinal Flower and that vine, over the course of the Summer, grew so much that it wrapped tendrils around each of the open-work metal frame and crawled over the top to the other side. They had no way to get up there and deadhead the flowers and they had to wait until the frost killed it to peel it off the metal lattice and vowed to never plant it again. It was gorgeous!

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    1. I can imagine the problems they had with the Cardinal Flower Vines. I just pulled down one that was mostly vine and few flowers. It was so strong! I have some still left growing in the garden. I think next year I might try growing them in hanging baskets and really make an effort to keep them in bounds.

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