Creating a hummingbird garden can actually save a bear and may save you money. How can that be, you might ask? It’s simple. Bears won’t bother a hummingbird garden; however, they will bother a hummingbird feeder which could endanger their lives. In some communities, homeowners can be fined for having birdfeeders out during bear season, which is March through November.
A hummingbird garden filled with plants that they like will attract many hummingbirds to your yard. Watching hummingbirds is a favorite activity of millions of Americans and offering them real nectar as a food supply in a hummingbird garden is healthier for them. You’ll be able to watch hummingbirds in your garden and not have to worry about a bear taking down your hummingbird feeder.
Bears wake up anytime after March each year and their feeding frenzy begins. On a daily basis, they’ll need to satisfy their hunger by eating about 2,500 calories a day. In the Fall, before bears hibernate, they’ll need 20,000 or more calories per day. A hummingbird feeder provides instant energy and calories of about 500 to 1,000 calories per feeder. It’s no wonder that bears enjoy the artificial sweetener.
The problem is that once a bear realizes this quick energy source, it will come back again and again for more. It will even travel to your neighbor’s to see if they have a hummingbird feeder available. As bears become accustom to yards and humans, they could become a problem and wind up dead by local officials. If your community has a law against birdfeeders, you could be fined. Check with your local officials before putting up a hummingbird feeder and consider keeping bears away from your home by planting a hummingbird garden.
Hummingbirds enjoy many plants such as agastache, monarda, penstemon, butterfly weed, petunias, and million bells. These plants are locally found at your nursery as well as online and will attract hummingbirds to your garden where you can enjoy watching them.
If you’re limited on space and don’t have any more room for a hummingbird garden, try adding a plant or two that will attract hummingbirds. Perennials such as agastache, monarda, and penstemon are very hardy plants and commonly found in Zones 3-9. Agastache Cana commonly known as Texas Hummingbird Mint grows about 24-36 inches high and about 18 inches wide. It’s very compact and has beautiful raspberry-pink tubular flowers. It requires well-drained soil, full sun, is a xeriscape plant, and thrives in Zones 5-9. There are many different agastaches that you can choose from. Purchase several and cluster them in your new hummingbird garden.
For something taller, you might try the Monarda ‘Violet Queen’ also known as Violet Queen Bee Balm. This beautiful monarda grows about 40-42 inches high but only 18 inches wide. It’s a great plant for a hummingbird garden. The fabulous coloring of deep lavender-pink flowers are highly atttractive to hummingbirds and butterflies. This plant is quite showy and will draw immediate attention to your hummingbird garden. It needs full sun, good garden loam, and thrives in Zones 4-9.
No space for a hummingbird garden? No problem. Fill container pots with Petunias or Million Bells and place them in or near an established garden or on your porch or deck. These annuals will bloom profusely through the summer into the Fall until frost. Hummingbirds will be attracted to these long-blooming plants and you’ll see them daily as they visit for nourishment.
A hummingbird garden will give you hours of joy as you watch the hummingbirds dart from one tubular flower to another. Butterflies will also visit and be an added treat in your new hummingbird garden.
For a win-win situation all around, creating a hummingbird garden is the way to go. You’ll be happy, the hummingbirds will love your garden, and the bears won’t have a hummingbird feeder to destroy.
Source: Personal Experience