how to attract birds and butterflies

Creating a space in your yard that attracts birds and butterflies is not only visually appealing, but also beneficial to the environment. Birds, especially hummingbirds, and butterflies are important in the flower-pollination process, and inviting them into your yard helps to ensure that flowering plants continue to thrive.

When planting your nectar-rich flowers and shrubs, make sure to place them in the sun. Nectar-source plants should receive full sun from midmorning to mid-afternoon. Also consider planting for continuous bloom, meaning when one plant stops blooming, another begins, so birds and butterflies have a constant source of food.

While nectar-rich flowers and shrubs are important, don’t forget about the importance of native plants. Choose plants native to your specific area, and not only will they thrive in your yard, but they’re the most naturally suitable for native wildlife. Once established, native plants require little water and little maintenance. Because they are perennial, most native plants return year after year, making them one less thing you need to think about.

In addition to plants, consider installing water features, such as bird baths and small ponds. Make birdbaths butterfly-friendly by creating places where butterflies can easily perch, such as a few rocks above water level. Any shallow, waterproof container—a glazed plant saucer or rock with a natural depression—will work if the center is no more than three inches deep. Even fountains and ponds can be made more accessible by placing rocks or branches near the waters edge. For installation of fountains and ponds, consider hiring a landscape professional who specializes in hardscape installation, so you can be sure the job is done properly.

There are seemingly endless options to creating pollinator friendly gardens. Have fun experimenting with various flowers and shrubs to see what birds and butterflies may pay you a visit.

There are seemingly endless options to creating pollinator friendly gardens. Play around with different flowers and shrubs to see what kind of visitors you might get from birds and butterflies.

Make sure to plant your nectar-rich shrubs and flowers in direct sunlight. Nectar-source plants should receive full sun from mid-morning to mid-afternoon. Additionally, think about planting for continuous bloom, which means that as one plant finishes its bloom, another one starts, providing a steady supply of food for birds and butterflies.

The Levite Jewish Community Center in Birmingham, Alabama features a Holocaust Memorial Garden that was designed, planted, and is maintained by Landscape Workshop. The garden is a pollinator garden that was inspired by the poem “The Butterfly” by Pavel Friedman. The company’s representatives have also brought significant pollinator messaging to the community, educating young students at the neighborhood elementary school about the value of pollinators, particularly honeybees. Thanks for this good work for pollinators, Landscape Workshop!.

Consider adding water features, like bird baths and tiny ponds, in addition to plants. Create areas where butterflies can readily perch, like a few rocks above water level, to make birdbaths butterfly-friendly. If the center is no deeper than three inches, any shallow, waterproof container will do, such as a glazed plant saucer or a rock with a naturally occurring depression. By positioning rocks or branches close to the water’s edge, even ponds and fountains can be made more accessible. To ensure proper installation of fountains and ponds, it is advisable to engage the services of a landscape professional with expertise in hardscape installation.

Although nectar-rich shrubs and flowers are valuable, native plants should also not be overlooked. Select local plants for your yard because they will not only grow well there but also provide the best habitat for local wildlife. Once established, native plants require little water and little maintenance. Most native plants are perennial, so they come back every year, saving you from having to worry about them.

Add a Birdbath

Wildlife, including birds, require a clean source of drinking water. In order to maintain the health of their feathers, birds must also bathe. A simple birdbath will do the trick. Birdbaths should only be two to three inches deep, or relatively shallow. It’s important to regularly dump and refill with fresh water. This will ensure that the birds have access to clean water and get rid of any mosquitoes. Occasionally use a scrub brush and hot, soapy water to clean your birdbath.

how to attract birds and butterflies

Build a Brush Pile

For protection from predators and to escape inclement weather, birds and other wildlife require sheltered areas. In the wild, snags—dead and dying trees—as well as the branches and logs of fallen trees offer excellent cover for butterflies and birds. If there is no risk of it falling and damaging your house, leave any tree snags on your land. By constructing a brush pile out of logs and tree branches, you can replicate this type of natural habitat by creating a rough dome with lots of hidden spots for birds and other small wildlife to hide.

how to attract birds and butterflies


How do you attract butterflies quickly?

Butterfly adults generally feed only in the sun. If sun is limited in your landscape, try adding butterfly nectar sources to the vegetable garden. Plant for continuous bloom – Butterflies need nectar throughout the adult phase of their life span. Try to plant so that when one plant stops blooming, another begins.

What attracts birds the most?

Birds love fruits, nuts, and seeds, so grow them in your garden. For fruits, plant beautyberry, pyracantha, Eastern red cedar, viburnum, hawthorn, sumac, palm, crabapple, serviceberry, dogwood, bayberry, persimmon, black gum, holly, and wax myrtle.

What kind of flowers attract birds and butterflies?

Hummingbirds and butterflies gravitate toward flowers rich in nectar, so consider planting flowers like: Bee Balm. Cardinal Flower. Chrysanthemums.

What are butterflies most attracted to?

Adult butterflies enjoy bluebells, marigolds, buttercups, hyacinth, clover, garden mint, knapweed, thistles, blackberry bushes, heather, lavender, Bowles’ Mauve wallflower, marjoram and willowherbs, among others. Are you growing wildflowers for pollinators?