We Got a Hummingbird Feeder
So on the Sunday before last I bought a hummingbird feeder. It was something of a Father’s Day present to myself. The Wild Birds Unlimited store was having a 25% off sale so it would have been foolish not to buy one.
We set it up on that same day and five days later we saw the first hummingbirds coming to feed. They were Ruby Throated Hummingbirds, which is the only kind of hummingbird in this part of the world.
Up until now I’ve relied only on plants in the garden to attract hummingbirds. Annuals like Cigar Plant (Cuphea ignea – pictured above with female Ruby Throat), Starflower (Pentas lanceolata), and various Salvias. Also perennials like Coral Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens) and Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis).
Incidentally, the picture above was taken by Judy one or two years ago.
Prior to setting up the feeder, though, I had seen only one hummingbird so far this year. I just got impatient.
The feeder needs to be filled with a 1:4 solution of sugar and water. The solution doesn’t need to be boiled, just heated on the stove as the sugar dissolves. It can be stored in the refrigerator.
You can buy Hummingbird nectar, but it is ridiculously expensive for sugar water.
The main thing about Hummingbird feeders is you have to change the solution regularly. According to the guy at the store, every two to three days. Also, the feeders need to be washed now and then. The one I bought can be washed in the dishwasher.
When I asked how often they should be washed, I was told often enough to keep them from getting sticky and crusty.
I’m pleased with our Hummingbird feeder. Hummingbirds are such tiny, amazing creatures, and for me they are part of the summer experience.
Do you have a hummingbird feeder? What are your favorite plants for attracting Hummingbirds?