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Fall Flowers for Hummingbirds: Readers’ Suggestions

Side view of a female hummingbird at a bee balm flower.

Last week, I wrote about planting fall flowers for hummingbirds, and I promised to post any suggestions I received. Fun fact: plants that thrive in much of the United States will not grow in Massachusetts because it’s too cold. If you detect a touch of envy in my tone, you’re wrong. It’s sheer, blatant jealousy, especially after a freak snowstorm dumped 3 inches of snow on us on the Friday before Halloween. Curse you, Climate Change! Snowstorms in October were once unheard of here!

But to get back to the topic—fall flowers for hummingbirds—a few of the ideas came from warmer climes. (Do any of you want visitors? I mean, after the pandemic is over? Wait, wait, that was just a momentary lapse. I’m focusing again. I promise.) Luckily, all but one of the suggested blooms will grow in Massachusetts, but if you decide to plant any of these, please check your own state for hardiness zones and the possibility that some could be invasive in hotter climates.

Nancy, the author of a historical novel, tweeted that hummingbirds use Fuchsia, Trumpet Vine (Campsis radicans), and Honeysuckle in Virginia. Sadly, the toughest Fuchsia I could find will not grow in Hardiness Zone 5. But the other two beauties do. Trumpet Honeysuckle (Lonicera sempervirens) is not invasive in my area and seems especially promising. Thank you, Nancy!

Sanebishop, who writes a hilarious blog about his farming misadventures, suggested Cypress Vine (Ipomoea quamoclit). I’ve never seen one, but the photos are gorgeous. An annual here, they bloom until the first frost. Thank you, Stephen!

And, of course, I should always listen to my mother. Hummingbirds visit her Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus) and Butterfly Bush (Buddleia davidii) well into September. Thanks, Mom!

Now it’s up to me to do a little more research to find which of these will grow in my partly sunny, droughty, sandy yard. I’m grateful to all of you for the information and for giving me a fun distraction this week.

2 responses to “Fall Flowers for Hummingbirds: Readers’ Suggestions”

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