Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochus colubris)

This article was originally posted almost 4 years ago, but bears reposting since we are now in the heart of our winter (although you would never know it except for the calendar date).  I also neglected to give a heads-up to the Hong Kong Orchid Tree (Bauhinia blakeana) which really attracts the ruby-throat at the nursery.

The ruby-throated hummingbird is the only hummingbird that lives and nests east of the Rockies.  This tiny bird is a migratory bird which lives in the northern states from late April until the first frost.  It then flies south to the Caribbean and Central America, with a small population stopping in South Florida and remaining throughout the fall and winter months.

To attract these hummingbirds to your yard, you can place feeders around your house.  In addition to the feeders, there are several flowering plants which are favorite nectar sources for hummingbirds.  A few of these include the China Hat Shrub (Holmskioldia sanguinea), Firespike Shrub (Odontonema strictum), Firebush (Hamelia patens), and the Butterfly Orchid Tree (Bauhinia divaricata).

It is a good idea to have a variety of plants that are reddish-orange in color with a tubular flower, and of course blooming throughout our winter months.  There are several that fit these criteria that we offer at the nursery; I only listed a few above that we routinely observe hummingbirds feeding from during the day.


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