I started gardening in 2004, creating a perennial raised-bed garden (always remember that raised beds need extra watering!). When my husband and I returned from our Cape May trip early June, after discovering the presence of hummingbirds, I decided to read more on the topic (a resource post will follow this one). Transforming my old perennial garden into a hummingbird garden has been a great source of joy for me! Through this process, I’ve rediscovered my passion for gardening; sadly I had abandoned my perennial garden for a few years minus some basic pruning, post Fall & winter cleanup, and fertilizing (meaning there were no new plant installations/landscaping for a while). Even with the recent new plant additions, I have kept a few of my previous perennials, namely Dragon’s Blood, daylily, bleeding hearts, and miniature roses. The others since have been transferred to a neighboring garden patch which we usually refer to as “The Bowling Pin” because of its shape. I saw a question posted to The Hummingbird Society Facebook site (hope you will decide to join!) regarding the perfect zone-specific plants and flowers to establish in one’s garden to successfully attract these birds. My best advice is to consult with your local nursery; they can be a wealth of information and you will have the confidence in knowing your purchase will have a higher potential to thrive in your garden. I know, shameless plug here to support your local small business, but you know how much I love small businesses ;)! My local nursery even had a printout highlighting perennials versus annuals (was very thankful for this list)!
The following are for Zone 6 (keep in mind these are dependent on sunlight and water conditions in your garden):
There may be more hummingbird-attractive plants I have not included on my list; I don’t consider it comprehensive since I’m still learning like you. I will try to update as I encounter them in the future. I hope this list will be helpful to all of you in Zone 6! Seems like nectar-producing species, red (hummers can see color), and/or tubular-shaped flowers (in which they typically find their bugs of choice here) are the way to go ;). Remember to set out your nectar feeder(s) and keep them very clean and full. The hummingbirds will become more and more reliant as nectar-producing flowers diminsh with the progression through summer into autumn. Also, place your feeders near these hummer-friendly plants. Hummingbirds love a place in which they can enjoy opportunities for shade, part sun, full sun, and cover (mature trees & shrubs) as a protection against potential danger. I suspect this is why they’ve chosen to remain in our garden for this reason.
Below, is a picture of my hummingbird garden in the middle of its transformation, enjoy =)…
As always, happy gardening!