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Shrubs That Attract Birds and Butterflies

Do you enjoy watching butterflies, hummingbirds and other wild birds in the yard? Many people interested in gardening and landscaping do enjoy drawing wildlife to the yard -- especially wildlife that does not eat up the plants you've worked so hard to grow (that leaves out deer!). My articles discuss some pretty trees and shrubs that attract birds and butterflies.

Butterfly Bush for Hummingbird Gardens, Butterfly Gardens
Does butterfly bush have a place in butterfly gardens? The plant is particularly adept at attracting tiger swallowtails. Butterfly bushes also attract hummingbirds, meaning hummingbird aficionados love them, too. And don't forget bees: butterfly bush attracts bees that will pollinate other plants in your garden.

Attract Birds With Dogwood Trees, Shrubs
We plant our landscapes with flowering shrubs and trees such as dogwood to enjoy the colorful floral pageants they put on in spring. But sometimes, there's a bonus, as their blooms and colorful berries draw desirable wildlife to the yard, too. Find out why I picked these ten particular plants as being top-flight among the spring shrubs.

Hummingbird Gardens for Attracting Hummingbirds
Attracting butterflies and hummingbirds doesn't mean placing great restrictions on your gardening options. You can draw these lovelies to the landscape without sacrificing looks, as these creatures often share our taste in plants. In this listing of great choices for hummingbird gardens I used such criteria as diversity and floral pizazz.

Butterfly Gardens: Attracting Butterflies With Trees, Other Plants
Despite some overlap, there are also significant differences between butterfly gardens and hummingbird gardens. Sure, some plants are good for attracting adult butterflies. But to have optimal butterfly gardens, learn about the host plants required for the larvae, or "caterpillars."

Trees and Shrubs to Attract Wild Birds
You want excellent fall foliage out of your trees and shrubs, right?. But as a bonus, certain shrubs and trees do a good job of drawing wild birds to your landscape. That's what I call a terrific landscaping 2-for-1! Peruse my "Top Ten" list and follow the links supplied therein for ideas to make your yard a wildlife paradise.

Attracting Eastern Bluebirds, Robins With Sumac
Sumac shrub is an emergency food source for wild birds in late winter and early spring. I have seen bluebirds and robins eating the seeds in early March here in New England. Landscaping enthusiasts should also value this North American native for its precocious fall color: sumac is one of the plants that kicks off the fall foliage season.

Trees and Shrubs for Winter Interest, Birdwatching
If you're a northern gardener who loves visiting your outdoor plants on your daily strolls, winter hits you like a ton of bricks. Suddenly most of the friends in your yard are mere shadows of what they were during the warm months. To recover from this blow, make the most of what winter has to offer. Grow these plants to draw wild birds to enjoy.

Holly Trees and Shrubs -- They're "For the Birds"
I found out the hard way that birds like holly berries. My Blue Princess holly produced a bumper crop of bright red berries, and I was all set to enjoy the color they would provide in my winter landscape. But the local blue jays had their own plans for my berries, swooping in and eating up all of them in the fall.

Silent Spring: Slowing Down to Hear Spring Birds and More
Most of you already have a pretty good idea of what Rachel Carson's book, Silent Spring is all about; you also know that the "silent" in the title invites us to ask what a spring would be like without bird calls. This piece is not a book review. Rather, it contains my own reflections on making the most of spring, focusing on a different type...

Ideas for Recycling Christmas Trees
Do you try to recycle in your landscaping? Maybe you do not even call it that. For example, I practiced recycling (without knowing it) when it comes to Christmas trees way back when I was a child. I enjoyed watching the wild birds at the feeder outside our kitchen window, and I would stick the spent Christmas tree out there as cover for the birds, so they'd be more likely to visit the feeder.

Miss Ruby Butterfly Bush
Sick of the same old, same old in butterfly bushes? 'Black Knight' is one of the cultivars you see in yards all around, and lavender-colored and white-colored plants are also very common. 'Miss Ruby' dares to be different, sporting a color suggested by the cultivar name. Like other types of butterfly bushes, this shrub is a rugged plant.

Blue Chip Butterfly Bush
After reading about 'Miss Ruby' and other butterfly bushes, perhaps you're wondering, "OK, sounds pretty, but isn't Buddleia invasive?" Yes, the butterfly bush shrubs traditionally grown in the U.S. are invasive in some regions, including the Pacific Northwest. But the main claim to fame of 'Blue Chip' is that it's not invasive.

Buddleia (Butterfly Bush)
Buddleia is a plant that, in spite of some admirable features, is problematic because of its invasive quality. In these resources I present specific types of butterfly bush, as well as an introduction to Buddleia for beginners. Access the introductory piece to learn, for example, how botanists classify the plant, what it looks like, what sun and soil conditions it likes, and which USDA zones it is suited to.

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