Do You Like Hummingbirds?

Flashy, low-water plants attract fly-ins!  I was just walking one of our client’s homes in Cherry Hills where we do the estate maintenance and I saw two hummingbirds flying above me!

Hummingbirds, butterflies and bees are the pollinating creatures that bring gardens alive through their beauty and movement as they fly from flower to flower.

Providing good food sources for these pollinators is an easy gardening task that beautifies the landscape and benefits veggies and fruit trees.  Attracting more pollinators to our yards is simply a smart and sustainable move.

Plant Select® offers several easy-care perennials suitable for the Rocky Mountain region that provide great color while attracting pollinators.  The plants listed below need little to no water once established and can all be grown in full sun.  Most are also suitable for high altitude gardening.




Baby blue rabbitbrush (Chrysothamnus nauseosus var. nauseosus)

Size: 16-28″ tall x 20-30″ wide
Why grow it: Small mounded blue-foliaged plant all season long until clusters of golden flowers appear in mid-August. Fragrant flowers attract a wide range of butterflies, moths and bees. Much more compact than the standard rabbitbrush.
Altitude limit: to 8000′

Fernbush (Chamaebatiaria millefolium)
Size: 3-5′ tall x 3-5′ wide
Care:  Must it dry thoroughly, if in clay soils
Why grow it: Fern-leaved native shrub that comes into full glory in the heat of summer with large spiky-clusters of white flowers. Leaves are somewhat persistent through winter at lower altitudes.
Altitude limit: to 7000′

Purple Winter Savory (Satureja montana var. illyrica)
Size: 4-6″ tall x 12-15″ wide
Why grow it: An evergreen, low-growing herb for perennial borders or vegetable gardens, it blooms purplish-blue in early summer attracting pollinating insects at the same time vegetables are beginning to bloom. Use as an ornamental edible.
Altitude limit: to 9000′

Bridges’ penstemon  (Penstemon rostriflorus)
Size: 24-36″ tall x 24-36″ wide
Care:  cut flower stalks down after blooming. Needs good drainage.
Why grow it: Long-lived western native penstemon that blooms in mid-late summer. Airy spikes of orangey-red tubular flowers attract hummingbirds; foliage is evergreen.
Altitude limit: to 7000′

Orange Carpet® hummingbird trumpet  (Zauschneria garrettii)
Size: 3-4″ tall x 15-20″ wide
Care:  Needs moderate to dry conditions.  
Why grow it: Ground-covering Western U.S. native that blooms mid-late summer. At peak bloom it can be covered with orange/red tubular flowers that are highly attractive to hummingbirds.
Altitude limit: to 9000′

This entry was posted in Gardens