Thursday, March 11, 2010

Feed the Birds

Watching wildlife in your yard is an enjoyable pastime. Two of the best ways to attract wildlife to your yard are to provide food and water. This can be achieved through plant selection and well placed feeders and water sources. With their high degree of mobility, birds are an easy critter to attract to your landscape and the variety of sizes and colors are a joy to behold.

While you can purchase and maintain hummingbird feeders, you can also plant small trumpet shaped flowers to attract these tiny aerial acrobats to your yard. These plants will also provide color for you to enjoy. Three of my favorite hummingbird attractors are autumn sage, agastache, and anisacanthus (hummingbird bush). For a bright spot of fall color, before the birds discover it, American beautyberry is a good choice. Several species of birds enjoy these bright magenta berries.

There are many hardscape ways to provide food and water. Water sources can include bird baths, ponds, and fountains. There are many good bird feeders available in the marketplace. If you would like to provide both at once, a “teacup” bird feeder might be a good choice for you. These small combo feeders and bird baths are great for an intimate setting just outside a window. Hang them from a limb or a garden shepherd’s hook so that it is visible from a window. You will also want to place it so that it is easy to refill and clean.

Add a little wildlife magic to your landscape with these suggestions. The combo feeder and bird bath pictured is available from EDCCollective. The name of one of its recycled components is the “Magic Garden series”. It is suspended from brass components for years of rust free use.