En EspaŅol
Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Mr. Smarty Plants - Southwest US Winter-flowering Hummer Plants.

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.

Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Wednesday - July 22, 2009

From: Ithaca, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Wildlife Gardens
Title: Southwest US Winter-flowering Hummer Plants.
Answered by: Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

Are there winter-flowering plants native to the American Southwest that are used as a food source by hummingbirds? I am a scientific illustrator working on an identification guide to common North American hummingbirds for Cornell's Lab of Ornithology. I want to include native plants but am having trouble finding winter flowering species. Thanks!

ANSWER:

There are no doubt quite a few winter-flowering native plants in the US Southwest utilized by overwintering hummingbirds.  However, it seems that hummers rely more on tiny insects and spiders during the winter than on flower nectar.  Here are a couple winter-flowering Southwest plant species that are favored by hummingbirds when in bloom:

Diplacus puniceus (red bush monkeyflower)

Arctostaphylos manzanita (whiteleaf manzanita)

 

More Wildlife Gardens Questions

Species of hackberry best for wildlife from Georgetown, TX
February 21, 2014 - Which species of Hackberry tree is the best for wildlife in Georgetown, TX (just north of Austin)? Your Plant Database says Celtis occidentals is "among the BEST food and shelter plants for wildlife,...
view the full question and answer

Plants for pollinators in Brown County, Texas
July 23, 2013 - I am attempting to plant on our family property a wide range of native plants for the central Texas area (May, TX). The flowers, bushes and trees that rely on pollinators, in particular bees, in order...
view the full question and answer

Native plants for condo apartments in New York
October 14, 2005 - Hello, and thank you for this wonderful source of help! We live in Hastings on Hudson, NY in a brick building of 7 condo apartments. Our corner unit has one narrow flower bed out front on the stre...
view the full question and answer

Need suggestions for plants for a bird/small wildlife refuge in Wichita Co, TX.
August 26, 2011 - With our continuing drought in North Texas, I'm planning to transform my small backyard into a bird/small wildlife "refuge". What types of native plants and grasses can I plant in dry, hot Wichita ...
view the full question and answer

Wildlife and bird friendly hedgerow for Chicago suburb
November 30, 2013 - Want to plant a wildlife/bird friendly hedgerow in suburban Chicago. Looking for a recommended mix of understory trees as well a shrubs and grasses. Site is part shade with average to wet soil and tr...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center