Hi everyone, I started a flower garden this year and am looking for ideas on what to do next with it. My goal is to add some height to the background and also attract hummingbirds and butterflies... without attracting any more bees than I already have.
Wild Dagga is a beautiful plant that hummingbirds love. It would be too late for this year, but definitely a winner for next year. Horizion Herbs has seed, it is quite uncommon and very exotic looking.
Katherine, Lantana is my most productive butterfly attractant. Zinnia has been popular in my yard this year. For height, mexican sunflower seem to be a hit for butterfly's and I'm pretty sure I seen a couple humming birds checking them out a few days ago. Butterfly weed also. Hopefully some of these will grow in your zone.
Observing hummingbirds, and perusing the lists of plants above, reinforces an observation I've had for a long time....hummers prefer flowers with a long tube or throat. The tongue of the hummers, and to some extent, of butterflies also, can reach the nectar down at the end of such flowers. This is usually out of the reach of bees, although they might still work the flowers for pollen, which is often placed near the opening, or be so desperate as to chew through the flowers.
The only plants I would immediately add to the list that arent' there yet are buddleia (for butterflies) and any kind of salvia (for hummers).
The hummingbirds here seem to really like pineapple guava, as well as the hardy hibiscus & althea/rose of sharon blooms. I've also seen them darting around the cypress vine that's naturalized in an area around the house.
One thing I've observed is the hummers tend to stick around the areas where there's tree/shrub cover that provides plenty of hiding space and shade.