Explore Plants

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty 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
    
 

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

Monday - August 10, 2009

From: Briarcliff, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Wildlife Gardens
Title: Plant for hummingbirds shelter in Briarcliff TX
Answered by: Barbara Medford

QUESTION:

I am looking to grow a container plant for the birds to enjoy on my back deck. A little greenery and possibly a place to rest for the birds would be great. This faces west and has no shade. There are mostly hummingbirds on the deck and the nearest tree for rest is 15 feet away. Heat tolerance is a must. A shrub of some sort would be great. The deck is on a drop off so growing something from the ground is difficult. So far I have only attempted to grow a large Texas sotol which is doing great. Thank you, Ginger

ANSWER:

What a lovely and generous idea. We can think of several shrubs that could be adapted to container use, would offer shelter, and nectar for hummingbirds and butterflies. If you have not already done so, we suggest you read our How-To Article Container Gardening with Native Plants. Also, follow the links on each plant we list below to learn its expected size, etc. You may have to do some pruning to keep them within the bounds you want, so be sure you determine when it's safe to prune in terms of the blooming branches. Some of the shrubs we list are deciduous, but since most of our hummingbirds are migratory, the lack of leaves should not be a deterrent. All of these shrubs are native to Travis County, and should be dependable.

Shrubs for attracting hummingbirds in Briarcliff TX

Anisacanthus quadrifidus var. wrightii (Wright's desert honeysuckle) - deciduous, blooms red, orange June to October, sun, attracts hummingbirds and butterflies

Erythrina herbacea (redcardinal) - deciduous, blooms red March to November, , sun, attracts hummingbirds. WARNING: Seeds are poisonous, should not be used where children could have access.

Lantana urticoides (West Indian shrubverbena) - semi-evergreen, blooms red, orange, yellow April to October, attracts hummingbirds and butterflies, sun

Leucophyllum frutescens (Texas barometer bush) - evergreen, blooms white, pink, violet sporadically year-round, depending on rain, sun, nectar for insects, and cover

Salvia greggii (autumn sage) - evergreen, blooms white, red, pink March to May, sun, nectar source for bees and butterflies

Senna lindheimeriana (velvet leaf senna) - dedicuous, blooms yellow August to October, sun, attracts birds, butterflies

Pictures from our Native Plant Database

 

 

More Wildlife Gardens Questions

Plants that ducks and geese will not eat
March 23, 2009 - Hello, I have a pet duck and goose. Who I love dearly and have built two ponds for.. one 4ft deep the other 6ft deep. The ponds are for their use, first and for most, but I would like to have a plan...
view the full question and answer

Fertilizing oaks to produce more acorns
March 04, 2009 - What type of fertilizer would I use on oak trees to possibly increase growth and acorn production ? I have some flooded oak timber that is home to migrating ducks but there is little for them to eat.
view the full question and answer

Passion for passionflower
May 16, 2010 - We have passionflower vine on our trellis. We planted the vines about 3 weeks ago. they grew well and started to flower. Recently a number of the vines began to wither while others are ok. The plants...
view the full question and answer

Wildlife benefit of western coneflower (Rudbeckia occidentalis)
October 16, 2007 - A neighbor and I are planting a nearby waste area. I'd like to plant things that will help any wildlife that's managed to survive, probably birds. I may be able to get Western Coneflower (Rudbeckia ...
view the full question and answer

Bee-pasture recommendations for AR
November 30, 2011 - Hello, I live in Melbourne, Ar, up in the NE corner of the state. I keep bees and would like to put in a couple acres of something for them. I'm leaning towards Viper's Bugloss. Do you know where I ...
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.